Kinders® are a goat breed featured in the Storey Illustrated Breed Guide to Sheep, Goats, Cattle and Pigs. But many people have never heard of them.
The Kinder® breed appealed to us because they produce high butterfat milk (8%!) for wonderful cheese yield, in ideal quantities for Homesteaders (1-1.5 gallons a day), are dual purpose as a meat animal, a manageable size and very feed efficient, and have great personalities.
Finding a Kinder in New England a few years ago was another story … since they started in Washington State, they hadn’t quite made their way this far east. The Kinder® organization (KGBA) offers “directions” for a Kinder starter kit — what to look for in a Nubian doe to be bred with a Pygmy buck. Both parents have to be registered to create true 1st generation Kinders, and so our education began.
The Kinder “Kit directions” didn’t go into specifics about the challenges of breeding a very short buck to a very tall doe, but that is clearly part of what makes them so special. After two years we had our first pair born on the farm. Then in 2014 we brought breeding stock in from Wisconsin with a couple other farms to really launch our herd.
Here, Lizzie, a Nubian and our home bred 1st Generation kids enjoy their first day on grass on the left. Willa, a Kinder and Moxie, a Nubian line up to show their sizes!
Dirigo Farm is currently home to three Kinder breeding animals after downsizing last year and retaining a doeling from each of our original does. Our initial breeding stock came from Sue Beck’s Pricker Patch Farm, but thanks to several farms in New England, we are able to cross with other lines to produce unrelated kids and refer buyers wishing to assemble starter herds themselves. Since our current does share Perry as their father, we will be breeding them to outside bucks in the coming year.
Pricker Patch Farm Carmel x Pricker Patch Farm Perry
Koka is a yearling doe, showing the stronger characteristics of her dam and sire, being wide, sturdy and friendly. She is bred to Sovereign Hill Kinders Griffin for May 2018 kids.
Pricker Patch Farm Daramiscotta x Pricker Patch Perry
Mariah started out very timid and has become friendly after being “adopted” by Koka. She is growing well and we hope she’ll have her mother’s productive, easy to milk udder. She will be bred in 2018.
Below left, Winne and Mariah play on the pallets, and on the right, their mother’s nap the previous summer.
Pricker Patch Farm Willamantic x Pricker Patch Farm Perry
Winne has the same lovely coloring as her mother as well as the stocky build sought after in dual purpose animals. She is very friendly and has a thick soft coat with a Cashmere undercoat. Winne will be bred in the spring of 2018.
For Reference Only:
Serena Kinders Trude’s Fantin x Serena Kinders Prudie
Perry is shown here for reference only as he now resides at Just a Bit Farm LLC in New Hampshire. He’s very long and full bodied, with a level back and solid brisket. We are very pleased with his impact on our current stock and happy he’s being used in the region to produce additional Kinders.