Have you ever gone to a All You Can Eat buffet and just stared at all the choices...need a little of this, need a little of that, piling so many things on to your plate, you feel like a circus act juggling the feast all the way back to your table? Of course we loosen our belt and buckle up for the ride, but the side pain is usually overtaken by the desire to look one more time at the choices since there were so many things you couldn't fit on before. Well, we are pretty sure this same phenomenon also applies in the Kiko goat world!
Recently, the Six Shooter Farm purchased 56 beautiful acres in Western Kentucky, adorned with lush green grassed pastures as well as woods filled with oaks, cedar, pine and an array of understory. With acorns, honeysuckle, blackberry brambles littering the floor of our new found farm, the new goat buffet would be officially open in the spring of 2021!
After a couple weeks of clearing paths, pounding posts, and pulling wire, it was time for the new buck pen to be christened! Like standing and staring in awe at the MGM Bellagio in Vegas, we were certain that our boys, Steel, Gunslinger and the new 2021 bucklings would have a hard time containing their excitement with all the food choices that laid before them. The importance of good off-season training to put on weight and build muscle mass can not be overstated. It was time for the boys to bulk up for the upcoming Fall breeding season.
We assume it must have felt similar to when our ancestors stepped off that ship in the early 1800's after that long trek from Germany and the Netherlands...when Steel and Gunslinger jumped off the trailer and put their hooves on new soil, it was officially their new home! As expected, there was some pause and a little trepidation at first, however once the boys realized that the goat buffet that laid before them was not a mirage, they immediately began sampling everything in sight. With so many acres available, they haven't been able to venture too far past their new favorite, the honeysuckle vines, but we are quite certain that the stomach pains will be overridden by the desire to go back and check out all the other choices at the goat buffet.
When you hear the term Smashing Pumpkins, you likely reminisce about the beautiful guitar melody in"Mayonaise" by Billy Corgan in his 1980's alternative rock band. However, at Six Shooter Kikos, the term Smashing Pumpkins has a completely different meaning to the fans of the farm where the crisp autumn days mean Kiko bellies are filled with these tasty multi-colored fruits.
Each year when the leaves turn and the temps drop, neighborhood porches are heavily laden with hues of orange and yellow, but what usually happens to the over-priced decor that are part of the 1.5 billion pounds of pumpkins produced each year in the U.S.? Usually these carved scary faces are quickly traded in for an Elf on the Shelf, but certainly there has to be something besides spiced latte's to make pumpkins still popular post-Thanksgiving?
Lucky for the goats at Six Shooter Kikos, some scientific data (or likely rumor) suggested that raw pumpkins, especially their seeds, provide a natural and holistic dewormer benefit for the goats. With that in mind, a brief call out to the neighborhood quickly resulted in a SUV full of unwanted spheres of nutrition.
With nothing to lose and a back seat full of pumpkins, we headed to the farm to see if our goats would take advantage of the bitter tasting cucurbitacin found in pumpkins that allegedly plays a role in preventing parasite infestation. Of course with so many varieties, we wanted to see if certain pumpkins were preferred over others.
Once we arrived at the farm, the curiousity of the herd left some nervous and some anxious but once the smashing of the pumpkins took place, it didn't long for the goats to treat this new found smorgasbord with the same lust we have for spicy tuna at the sushi bar. They just couldn't get enough of the orange delicacy.
In the end, it really didn't matter if the folklore of a possible natural dewormer proved true or not, because our goats were happy goats who just loved these unwanted pumpkins.