As I've mentioned previously, my cousin is looking to get out of the goat raising business, and so is bringing her two favorite bred does to live with us for the foreseeable future. They are Alpines, which is a full sized breed, and are significantly bigger than the minis that we've cut our teeth on. This is the big leagues!
Alpines are French/Swiss in origin, and are one of the most popular dairy goats in the United States. They make great milk, and a LOT of it. They're also just great little critters all around, as I'm learning in my crash course on the Alpine breed. Dairy Goat Journal puts it nicely -
"Alpines are a versatile utility animal. Great milkers for both home and commercial dairies, Alpines produce a high volume of milk. They have the ability to produce over a period of one to three years between freshenings or milk through. This produces valuable year round milk and reduces cost by not breeding every year. Alpine milk has a high cheese yield because of good butterfat and protein content. They produce well on pasture or in dry-lotted hay fed conditions. They are known for being exceptionally hardy, curious, and friendly."
All good things! Our only concern is that they might be a little rough on our smaller goats, but we have the option of separating them if that is the case. No bullies allowed on this farm!
More goats, more babies, more milk = crazy exciting times in the Hollow. :)