Separate names with a comma.
Discussion in 'Goats' started by Starlighthill, Mar 31, 2005.
I would like to hear the pros and cons of once a day milking.
I have done it, and never had any problems. You get less milk, but if you have a job that requires long hours, it is a way that you can still have goats. If you want a certain amount of milk, you may need more goats to milk to obtain the same amount as if you were milking twice/day.
Do you remember what percent less? I switched last week and my understanding was that I would get 1/3 less. Actually I'm getting half of what I was. I don't know if it's because they can't hold the milk in their udders or if they are just producing less.
It usually doesn't take me long to switch from twice daily to daily milking. Depending on the goat I get 1/3 to 1/2 less.
Milking once a day will give you less no matter what. Supply and demand is something to remember. If you milk a doe more she will produce more as her body is telling her she needs to make more. If there isnt the demand she wont produce it.
Do you switch back and forth? In other words, can you milk twice daily five days and once daily for two days of every week or would that be hard on the doe? I nursed my kids and I think it would make them uncomfortable.
I like the ease of daily milking, especially Sunday nights when I don't have to milk after church.
i milked once a day all last year by leaving a kid on her.
i milked pm as i have to be at work early.
after kids are two weeks old i put mom in pasture to browse durring the day and milk in afternoon and the evening then put mom back in with kids after final milking. her udder was really full when I milked.
This helps me out and also while the mom is out to pasture I put grain and hay in for the kids. They learn quick to eat it as they are hungry. I don't use a lot of milk so I had more than enough for our use and to make soap. I fixed the feed for her early and milked her when I got home from work in the afternoon giving her half the feed then let kids empty her out good, then put her back out to pasture for a while longer. This was because I was feeding a bottle baby and also , at first it is hard for the little ones to go too long without nursing. Then before bedtime I milked her again and fed the baby one last time before bed. I make sure that the kids have nursed good in the morning before separating them and did not milk her dry so there was some left for the kids. As they got older I milked her later in the afternoon and only milked out enough in the evening to feed the bottle baby. before long I was only milking once in the evening. I got about a half gal of milk at a time. Sometimes more
When her kids were old enough to ween I sold all but one wether that I put in with her at night so I did not have to milk in the AM. This works great as the wether will nurse as long as she will let him. He is old enough to be weened so you don't have to feel quilty for leaving them separated all day and if you want to go away for the weekend then you just leave them together all the time.
When It was time to dry her off I just left him in with the herd and she proceeded to ween him herself and this dried her off gradually.
No, I almost always start with twice a day milkings then back off to daily. I've never gone the other direction. I agree that it would be hard on the doe to try to force her to see-saw production. As a previous poster pointed out, and I'm sure you know from nursing, it's a supply/demand situation. I'll probably always do once a day milking, though. I get plenty of milk, my does aren't pushed and it gives me more flexibility around the homestead.
Do you have an average of how much milk you get per doe when you are milking once/day?
I love the freedom of daily milking, but don't know if my does really produce very well for dairy animals, even with twice daily milking. When I was milking 3 does twice a day, I was getting 1 3/4 gal per day. Milking once per day, I'm getting about 3/4 gal. One doe is 10 weeks into lactation and the other two are 3 weeks and one of those is a first freshener. I must add that the only grain they get is what they eat while they are on the milkstand. They do have 2nd cutting alfalfa/grass hay.
My does give 1 to 2 (+ a bit) quarts daily on once-a-day milking. These are grade, cross-bred does. They are roughly 2 months into lactation now. My 3 first fresheners give 1 to almost 2 quarts daily. Mine get graze, grass hay, about a quart daily 14% creep plus 1 to 2 quarts corn on the milking stand.
My nubian doe gave me a little over 1 gal. two milkings a day....when I switched to once a day she gave me a little over 1/2 gal.
I am a once a day milker because I get plenty of milk that way and I have way to many projects on the ranch to just concentrate on the goats. I raise cattle, horses, donkeys, poultry, garden etc. Right now I have a LaMancha that I am milking once a day that has two doe kids on her that are two weeks old. They stay with her 24 hours a day and she gives me just under a gallon a day from the one milking and the kids are growing VERY fast. My second LaMancha kidded two days ago. She is a heavy milker and I will do the same with her. These two does will give me approx. 2 gallons a day with the kids on them for now. If I want more milk, I can milk twice a day after weaning. But truthfully, I just don't have time. Between the two of them, they have given me 3 does and 1 buck. My LaMancha buck is from a heavy milking line so the three doelings should be heavy milkers too. I plan on keeping them and next year I should have five heavy milkers if all goes well. I have a Nubian/Alpine doe with a large bag with tiny little teats that CAN'T be milked that I crossed with my LaMancha buck (from the great udder line). She kidded today giving me a doe and a buck. I am interested to see if her daughter will have larger teats. The two LaMancha's I milk give us enough for the humans, the dogs and the chickens. I have one goat left to kid, due any minute.... a half Boer (daughter of the Nubian/Alpine) bred to a Fullblood Boer. Hoping for does to start my meat herd!
From myt experience, 1/3-1/2 less with once/day sounds like a good "ballpark" number. I have fouind that it varies with indivdual does.
The last 6 weeks of pregnacy I fed free choice alfalfa pellets and 16% horse sweet feed working up to two small coffee cans in the morning and in the evening each. They had all the coastal hay they could eat and some browse. They came into "show" condition but not overly fat. The kids, however, were too large at birth, I think. Most of them between 8 and 9 pounds and were twins. The milk is not as sweet as last year and a forum member here said it was the molasses in the sweet feed so i will back of of that and go back to what i fed last year....a mix of grains, black oil sunflower seeds, lactation pellets and alfalfa pellets. Alfalfa hay in Texas is not very good and real expensive so i don't use that. I am transitioning my feed over the next few weeks to see what happens. My does came from a commercial dairy so they really are good milkers. They had been in a milk line where they had been milked with a machine and are quite used to the whole milking thing. I milk by hand though and boy do my hands get a work out. This dairy goes out of state even to purchase special bucks each year to improve their herd so they do have good genetics. I feel lucky to have found my girls. The goats i have had in the past never measured up to my LaManchas I have now. I guess that is why I am so sold on the breed. They have wonderful dispositions too. This dairy also has a nice dairy line of Nubians but they don't milk for the long number of months that the LaManchas do.