|Posted on October 25, 2012 at 7:35 PM|
Well, after going over finances last night, it turns out we are not able to build the second, bigger pen for the goats like I had hoped. They will have to over-winter with the pigs. We've been told pigs will run just fine with sheep and goats, and that pigs will eat a goat alive. Crossing fingers that our pigs can keep themselves together until after the snow recedes and we can put up the portable electric netting for the rotational grazing, as well as the new goat shed that will house the goats, birthing pens, and milk stand.
So, Julian and I spent the morning moving the goat/pig house into the center of the pen, and insulating it, in order to keep them cozy, and to hopefully reduce the liklihood that the goats will be able to escape this winter. Here are a few pics:
Looks like they like it just fine. I used 3 free pallets, two standard size and one longer. I connected them together with some outside corner brackets. I then topped the 3-sided structure with tin roofing and filled it with straw. I lined the outside on all 3 sides, and half of the front opening with straw bales (You can see Tiny on top of one of the front bales before we were finished, in the top photo). They are $2 per bale at a farm around the corner from our house, so inexpensive insulation and housing supplementation. This insulates the open slats of the pallets, but not too much, so that the goats can have the excellent ventilation that they need.
The goats sleep on top of the interior straw, the pigs underneath it, off to the side. It is sooooo freaking cute when we go outside. The goats stand up as soon as they hear the door. We approach the pen and they start walking toward us hoping we're carrying a treat. No pigs in sight. We hollar "Here pig, pig, pig, pig!" and the straw pops up! Then 2 little piggies come shuffling out of the new-found straw bumps. Adorable!
I hope it lasts them well through the winter!