Whoever came up with that ‘observation’, hardly exists in my current situation!! …and I’m not talking about the weather! Let me explain.
It’s less than 10-days before our local Armada Fair…ready or not, here we come! It’s THE BIG EVENT for all our 4-H livestock project kids – such as GOATS – (and including dogs and cats, pocket pets, etc) and many various ‘CRAFT’ projects. The FAIR is the ultimate show ‘n tell for both 4-H and Open Class (the public at large) with premiums and ribbons and bragging rights! whosh!!
We, my daughter and I, have been working with our 4-H goat project kids – a mix of both market goats and dairy goats since January. We focus on goat knowledge during the winter months and later in Spring/Summer, we work with our goats on showmanship skills, hands-on projects ****and MORE goat knowledge.**** The kids are also required to ‘make’ a Goat Project Book – a compilation of info about their goat AND a vet science project (also about goats)…in order to actually ‘compete’ (a prerequisite) in the show ring. We have goats to shave/fit for show and complete our Club display board for the goat barn too!
The 4-H’rs are also expected to help/volunteer to clean and re-clean the fairgrounds in preparation for Fair including this year, re-painting the 4-H barn, set-up displays, decorate various livestock barns, etc.
This year, I’ve accepted/volunteered to be the 4-H Goat Superintendent. Simply collecting Goat Project Books – on time – has been a challenge to say the least! No exceptions…why do THEY say that when it ain’t true? There’s always an exception! Yesterday I delivered my Goat Project Books to my judge(s) to afford them the time/courtesy to review the project books [which the kids work on so diligently – well, most of the kids] before the actual sit-down interview with the judge. …and I was STILL missing ONE project book! Oh well.
The Fair also encourages goat FUN classes: costume and agility. YES, I’ve been making agility obstacles (out-of-pocket expense) for Fair. Now, that should be fun to watch the goaties and kids!!
BUT, the greatest challenge for me has been/will be administrative/regulatory SCRAPIE ID & health inspection [ie check-in] for the 4-H goat exhibitors…each and every goat! While nothing new (after all, it IS required by law), it appears WE haven’t been diligent in performing our duties – and now it’s a really big deal! Goat folks are scurrying to get Scrapie tags, tattoos, paperwork in order to be allowed to show their goats… YIKES! Kill me now!!!
Is it over yet????
Jenny a sheep question for the goat super. I have entered a few sheep for the first time at Armada. We have tagged our lambs with Premier Q-flex small tags. The lambs are registered and the tag number is on the registration. Will this meet the requirement? Thanks!
Hi Roger! It would be ‘best’ to ask the Fair sheep super what FAIR will ‘accept’ for scrapie ID. While this is nothing new (State law requires any sheep/goat leaving your property – unless going to butcher – to be ‘tagged’ w/scrapie facility ID #), the Fair has never enforced. In my opinion, NO – your sheep do not comply w/scrapie ID (UNLESS your PREMIER tags have your scrapie premises ID# on them??). I have talked to MI State officials – owners of goats that have been registered/tattooed w/their breed registry (similar to NASSA) may LINK their scrapie facility premise ID to their registered goat herd ID and that will satisfy MI scrapie. They do not have a similar MI law/link for sheep ): …because I asked about my LINKING my NASSA flock also. However, you may tattoo your scrapie facility ID (a 7-alpha numeric #) into your sheep’s ear, in lieu of a scrapie tag! YAY! You must also keep a ‘crimped’ ‘spent’ scrapie tag/document on sheep’s registry even better…with your records! Scrapie facility ID # and tags are available free from MI agency.
Sorry for such a loooooong answer…I googled Premier tags and they indicate NOT SCRAPIE APPROVED, but I don’t know what you had custom printed on them. You can also order custom scrapie tags from State for a fee. Feel free to discuss further off-line. (:
Good for you for sharing your goat knowledge with your local 4-H club! My kids were involved in 4-H growing up and my daughter and I helped out the horse project kids when we lived in Texas. It’s time consuming but so worth it!
Thank you!! I couldn’t agree more. Kids need passionate mentors (and we ‘need’ them too)!!