November 2015

Regular readers, if there are any of you, are probably getting sick and tired of me saying ‘It’s been a mellow month around here’.  Happy to oblige.

He’s gone!  The bull is gone.  What a relief.  After 2 months of cajolling him twice a day with grain, I finally got him to voluntarily go where I wanted him to go.

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It’s hard to see, but he’s in there.  We borrowed the trailer from our friend Helen, it took him 3 weeks, but he finally went in.  Once he was comfortable going in and out, on the right day I shut that big door and he was locked in!  What a relief.  Our cows were in there with him and they were all nervous with the door shut, but I was able to sort them myself and his owner came and picked him up a few hours later.  What a relief.

With him gone, that means I don’t need to buy him (and butcher him next summer).  So I bought 2 calves from Helen:

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And we also bought 6 pregnant ewes:

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All of these purchases were waiting on that bull leaving.

The calves are about 7 months old, one is ours for 2017 and one is for the farmers market.  The sheep are Katahdin hair sheep.  No shearing and no tail docking required.

What a relief.  Did I already say that?  You have no idea.

Speaking of no idea.  I have no idea about sheep.  Never really been around them.  But I’ve wanted them on the farm since we bought it (spring 2013 for the curious).  They eat grass and they taste good.  Good combo.  They’re supposedly all pregnant, don’t know exact due dates, the farm we got them from had a ram get loose.  One is very pregnant now and due within a month.  The others will get there.

One interesting thing about sheep is the first 80% of the gestation the embryo hardly grows at all.  Then in that final 20% the little guys really start growing.  Since I don’t know anything about sheep, what I’ve read is this last 20% (the last month) you should give them some grain since the lambs are growing so fast it’s hard to get the ewe the nutrition she needs without it.  We’ll see how that winds up shaking up as time passes.

Anyway, not a mellow month around here.  A very fun month!  We have pigs again soon, but they came in December so you’ll have to wait until next month for that story.

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