April 29, 2015

Kinder Cashmere?

One of my bucks grew a prodigious undercoat this winter. He's been shedding all month.

This is California aka Clark Kent aka Supergoat
(Because he's mild mannered & flew cross-country to get here).

This downy undercoat is indeed called cashmere, although it would be nowhere near the quality of fiber that would come off a true cashmere goat.


I've had goats grow undercoats before, but never like this. The fiber artist in me is fascinated and wants to harvest it! He absolutely does not like a brush but will let me pluck it out until he gets bored and wants to move on.


Unfortunately it's not exactly spinnable quality. It's short, scurffy looking, and has a lot of his black hair mixed in.

It's driving me nuts because I need an updated photo of him but he looks pretty scruffy right now. Not that he cares, but I'm sure it will be cooler once his shedding is all done.

16 comments:

Renee Nefe said...

I wonder if you can fashion a goat self brusher thing so the goats can rub against them to brush off their winter coats themselves? or offer him grain while you pluck?

Quinn said...

When it's almost sitting on the edge of the topcoat like that, you might be able to use a slicker-type dog brush to sort of lift the clumps out without actually putting the teeth of the brush into the coat to brush him. Not sure I'm describing it clearly, but if you try it you'll see what I mean, and if it will work.
I'm doing a lot of "cosmetic" brushing at this time of year...not expecting to get usable fiber, but wanting to get the goats' coats cleaned up so air and light can get through to their skin. Everybody feels better with air and light on their skin once the weather warms up..
Sometimes they surprise me - Vinca gave me a whole 'nother bag of cashmere last week, when I thought I'd just be tidying her up! :)

Ngo Family Farm said...

Fiber goats are on my "want to have someday" list! Have you ever owned any? I have a neighbor who raises cashmere goats, and the fiber is like a cloud, so beautiful.
-Jaime

KathyB. said...

My old goat, and yes, he's old , rubs himself against his feeder to remove his undercoat this time of the year. I have toyed with the idea of obtaining a fiber goat but since I have so many sheep I have decided I am busy enough with all the wool my flock of Jacob sheep provide. Still, a gal can dream.

I see you also keep bees. We do too. Life with livestock, honeybees, gardens, and oh so much more, is a busy life full of hard work and many challenges , but so well worth it.

Leigh said...

That's what they use fences for. :) I've tried combing, but it's really thick and I think he doesn't like the pulling.

Farmer Barb said...

Ah, goat fuzz. The tool of choice for cashmere producers is a dog rake. I have a couple in my area and I tried using a slicker. The coat of the goat I was trying to gather off of was not "ready" so it didn't come out. The rake is like a Furminator. It is meant to catch the loose stuff and leave the guard hairs. If you look at fiber processors, cashmere requires a centrifugal process to remove the heavy hairs. It ain't cheap. I vote buying someone else's. My Nigerians have that downy fluff because it is so cold here in the winter. I am surprised your goats are so fluffy. Mine look like they are exploding right now.

the Goodwife said...

My wether Icing Ears (named by the Youngun and called IE) had that! They do look just awful while it's coming out, and I know the lady who go me started with my goats said she had spun it before, it's just as you said, not as nice as "real" cashmere!

Leigh said...

Quinn, I knew you would know! I'm not sure if it's actually worth doing, but it's hard not to resist.

Leigh said...

Jaime, I used to want angora goats, because I think they are real lookers. Cashmere goats produce only ounces, so that didn't seem to be the way to go either. I need milk more than fiber, so that's the route we went.

Leigh said...

Kathy, I love Jacob fleece. But I have to agree about having one's hands full. :)

So glad to hear you keep bees too! I'll have to look through your bee posts. I need all the advice and pointers I can get.

Leigh said...

Barb, well, it's an enticing thought but I know I'll never actually make an attempt to spin my Kinder cashmere. It all boils down to too much to do, and not enough time to do it all in.

Gill - That British Woman said...

what a great idea having goats that can provide fibre.

Jean said...

Looks like a furplosion to me -- hope you can find a solution.

Leigh said...

Sadly not as nice as good quality cashmere! I can see the temptation to spin it, but these days I don't have much spare time. Probably just as well 'cuz I know it would be a lot of work to prepare with only so-so results.

Leigh said...

Gill goats provide cashmere and mohair! Beautiful fibers, eh?

Leigh said...

LOL, that's exactly what it is! I reckon the solution is time. If I don't brush, comb, or pull it out, it sheds out. He just looks pretty goofy in the mean time.