White Earth Goat Maanadikoshensag Project
WELRP Goat Report Winter 2012
Currently at the White Earth Land Recovery Project farm we have five healthy mixed dairy bred goats. We have two Alpines, one Toggenburg, one Toggenburg/Alpine and a La Mancha. All the goats except for the La Mancha are does. The La Mancha is a weather. They are currently being cared for by Zachary Paige, an AmeriCorps Vista since June, and before that by Terri Laduke. All the goats are in top condition and do not have any visible lymph nodes that indicate the Caseous Lymphadenitis disease that was reported on last year by the manager, Andy Hayner.
Zach and Andy talked and we are fairly certain that the Caseous Lymphadenitis was a misdiagnosis, or the disease has expired because their conditions have been improved from the place we got them. Zachary has been attending courses at Mstate given by Tom Prieve, who is a veterinarian. Tom is a meticulously detailed vet and after taking his classes, we think the goats are very healthy. There has been no problem with body weight, milk production, and reproductive efficiency which are all related symptoms of CL.
The farm manager and community members care for the goats together. The compost from the schools on the reservation will go to the farm for goat food. The goats graze the pasture in different areas on the farm to eliminate parasite consumption. The original plan for the goats a few years ago was to sell them to Somalis in Pelican Rapids and Fargo and have 25 goats by 2012. We did this successfully for 2011-12, but now the Somali community has other sources for their Hallal. The last year we have been breeding them to be milked. Last summer we milked one of the goats, made cheese and gave some to the community.
Three of the goats are currently pregnant with another milk bred Billy. We are starting to prepare for milking all three goats. We have a milking stand and learned all procedures to make and sell goat milk products. We are interested in making caramel, yogurt, cream cheese, feta, chevre, soap and ice cream. We plan to have cheese making workshops as well as ice cream making next spring and summer with children from the reservation and visitor classes. Every few months students from Morris and Hamlin come to volunteer and this will be one of the activities they can do. WELRP will sell all these items in the Minwanjige Café and also make milk and protein shakes out of the whey combined with the raspberries we grow. Minwanjige Café is owned by WELRP and we plan on working with the tribal health inspector to certify our product. The goats not only produce for the community but are a sustainable part of WELRP giving opportunity to give people a behind the scenes look into the production of milking and care for goats.
Please contact us with any questions.
Impacts and Contributions/Outcomes