From: “Brenda Lange” Subject: Blog, May 4, 2013
BOUNCING BABY GOATS KEEP BUSH BUNNY HOPPING!
Bunny just got in from our goat farm, where 117 Orphans Unlimited goats now live. I was out there taking care of baby goat number 8 for this week. On Thursday, the maternity ward of BOTH barns were literally overflowing with bouncing baby goats, all going BAAAA… as they chased after their mobile baby bottles! SIX Baby Goats were born in 20 hours on Thursday. #6 was dropped into this world as I watched. #7 and 8 arrived on Friday. Friday, I was accompanied by Linda Stanley, who got to cuddle one of the fuzzy little ones, as they are so soft and cute when only a few days old.
Within the first 24 hours after the birthing process, each mother goat receives a dose of de-wormer medication to prevent anemia from 1000’s of blood sucking stomach worms that are signalled to hatch due to hormonal changes during the birth process. Stomach worms are the #1 killer of goats, and our adult goat death rate has been zero since starting this routine. It’s less trips on me when they all “bingo” on the same day, but it does stress the goat staff a bit. The babies stay in the nursery with their momma’s for 3–5 days before joining the herd. This gives the babies time to strengthen their legs and learn to run beside their momma when in the pasture. One man is assigned to do nothing but nursery duty when the birth rate is so high. Those first 24 hours are critical if a weak goat is to be saved. PTL most of ours are born strong and healthy.
ORPHAN BABIES ALSO ON THE RISE
NINE new orphaned babies were admitted to our program in the last 7 days. This is sad news, because it means that their mommas perished after giving birth. Linda Stanley, and Nilza have been kept busy teaching new mothers how to boil water, clean baby bottles, mix formula, etc. These are things we take for granted, but which these grandmothers have never been exposed too. These grandmothers grew up in 30 years of war, where a baby who lost its mother was doomed, as no formula or baby bottles existed. So learning to bottle feed a baby is quite a challenge to some of them, especially when they’ve never heard of germs!
MY BLOGS MAY BE A BIT SHORT the next few weeks. Tomorrow we kick off the “public bean buying” program. I spread the word last week that I’d buy beans brought to our warehouse. We have submitted documents requesting permission to buy early (before June 1st) in bulk from the villages. We hope to receive a positive answer this week. But in the meantime, I’m free to buy whatever is brought to my door. SO OUR THEME SONG IS “Bringing in the beans, bringing in the beans. We will go a praising, bringing in the beans!” All that is sung to the well-known hymn, “bringing in the sheaves”. We need all the beans the public can spare if we are going to feed orphans this year.
Blessings from Brenda, Linda, and Eric in Balama