Friday, April 10, 2015

goat coats

What shall I do today after morning chores?


Oh, I know!

I'll comb goats again.

These are three of my rake-style combs, which I brought in and washed last night. I use an assortment of combs and brushes, usually three or four per goat, per session. This year I've been using two slickers, four rakes, and two combs.

(I own one hairbrush, by the way.)

Someone recently asked about the length of topcoat on cashmere goats. Very variable! For example, these boys are full brothers, and yet are at two ends of a spectrum.

Betula has an incredibly long topcoat. I call it "Hollywood Hair" because when he runs his coat flows and it looks like he's moving in slow-motion. Betula produces very white cashmere. It is not easy to comb it out from under all that long topcoat:

By contrast, brother Acer has a very short, dense topcoat, much like a plush toy. He produces grey/taupe cashmere:

Some cashmere breeders have a color preference, but I enjoy all the variation in my little gang's fiber. I've been told even the darker cashmere takes dye beautifully; maybe one day I will experiment.

Meanwhile, a challenge awaits.

This is going to be a two-pockets-full-of-carrot-pennies operation.