By JENNIFER MEIER
MIDDLEBURY — Having twins is the norm for goats. Quadruplets are considered rare. So when a Nubian goat named GM Acres Cadence went into labor on Valentine’s Day, owners Mary and Gil Morgan were expecting twins — maybe triplets.
After just a half hour of labor, Cadence along with Mary, Gil and veterinarian Emilie Blough were busily cleaning and feeding quintuplets.
The three males and two females bring the number of goats at the Morgan’s barn and surrounding pasture up to 13.
“We were expecting more than two because she’s had quadruplets before,” Mary said. “We thought she was done and then she gave one more push and out came number five.”
The soft, tan and white siblings are curious, vocal and friendly.
“The breed is known for being loyal, personable and vocal — they’re almost like dogs,” Mary said. “We just really enjoy having them around.”
These long, floppy-eared Nubians also produce milk that is higher in butter fat than most breeds.
For the first couple of days, Mary was out in the barn every three hours bottle feeding the three kids who weren’t nursing. Just a week later the kids have doubled their weight, the largest of the litter topping the scales at 10 pounds.
The Morgans enjoy drinking the milk and letting local students show their goats at the county fairs.
“Last year, the same buck that sired this litter, sired one that won Champion Dairy Wether at the LaGrange County Fair and one that won Reserve Champion at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair,” Mary said.