The tool today is the elastrator, and the associated rubber band.
I am a terrible blogger. I should keep up to date, but I have not--witness the six goat kids bouncing around outside the window, heretofore unmentioned. I should post cute photos--and there is precious little as cute as a precious little goat kid--and I have not. As for the first failing, well, that cat is out of the bag. As for the second, here, have this:
Pretty quick work, actually. Slip the little orange cheerio(TM) over those four prongs, squeeze the handles, and it opens up about two inches--wide enough to fit over the necessary bits. Roll the rubber band off of the prongs, and you're done. The kids appeared to be slightly uncomfortable for about an hour, but it seems (based on some conversations I've had) far less painful than a vasectomy. Another week or so, the whole package will fall off, and we will no longer have bucklings--we'll have wethers.
Brother E. is in New Zealand at the moment, revisiting the city we lived in for a year when I was five. I don't remember much of the place, but I do remember wonderful beaches. A feature of all the beaches in New Zealand, as I recall it, was that the tideline was marked by those little orange cheerios. New Zealand has a lot of sheep, which means a lot of lambs. All of those lambs get their tails docked, and a lot of them get castrated, so a lot of those little orange cheerios get washed downstream. Brother E. has visited the beaches, and says that he hasn't seen too many of them--I'm not sure if it's because of changes in practices, or because lambing season has just started there.
Did I mention lambs? We have lambs too. See? Bad blogger. Baad!