Great goats in the making

By Corene Brisendine

Riley County youngsters who’ve spent the past year polishing their skills with goats got a chance to show those skills off in the Hurlburt Hall show ring Saturday afternoon.

Several proved they’d put all that time and effort to good use. Michaela Sievers took grand champion for her Alpine milker, Oberhasli milker, and Saanen doe as well as best in show with her Saanen milker. She also took grand champion in showmanship with her handling and knowledge of goats.

Sievers has been raising goats all her life and has been a member of both 4H and the American Dairy Goat Association. This year she was honored by the association as being the alternate national youth representative.

Sievers, 18, said she plans to attend Kansas State University, where she wants to major in pre-vet.

Sievers said she likes the goats’ personalities. She said they are intelligent, but at the same time they like to have fun.

Courtney Anderson took home a grand champion ribbon as well with her LaMancha doe. Anderson said she has been working with goats for about six years, and likes the LaMancha breed because it is the only breed that originated in the U.S. Its distinct features make it unmistakable from other breeds with a soft brown coat and no ears.

Anderson said she likes working with goats because they are playful and because of their size are easier to work with than cattle. She said she only shows her goats in the dairy portion because she doesn’t like selling them.

She hopes next year she will produce enough milk from the goats to make cheese, butter or some other dairy product.

The Nubian doe Grand Champion went to Mikayla Winter of Leonardville.

The judge looked for several things both with the goat and with the handler . In judging the goat she looked for strong legs, a wide body, a deep chest, well balanced milk sac that is clearly defined as two separate halves from behind, balanced teats, and a flat back that slopes down from the front to back as if it were walking uphill.

The Alpine breed is multi-colored with black, brown and white markings. The Nubian breed comes in a variety of colors, but is best known for its long floppy ears. The Oberhasli breed looks like a buckskin horse with its soft brown coat and black stripe running down the center of its back.  The Saanen breed sports a solid white coat that is almost never clean.

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