Oh my does Reese, our new Border Collie puppy, have a set of lungs on him. He’ll learn and I don’t blame him for the puppy caterwauling. I’ll be sleep deprived for a few months. It’s okay, at least I’m not loosing sleep worrying about missing sheep or Jersey bulls getting out.
Shine is doing fantastic in her new home. Her new caregiver told me yesterday he wouldn’t sell her for $1,000. Guess I should have asked more for her. <smile> She helped get chickens out of a tractor on Monday and I know from experience being able to send a dog into a tractor to move rabbits or chickens to the front is an amazing savings in both time and wear and tear on the body.
Sampson, the livestock guardian puppy goes to the Amish family this morning. Hopefully he’ll learn his job there and become as invaluable as Shine. I think he will, if not, he’ll come back here which would be fine because he’s settling in here perfectly fine. So well that I almost wish he wasn’t going to live with them.
Took two Jerseys to the processor yesterday. They both loaded up and unloaded without any trouble which is wonderful. Nothing is worst than difficult loading or unloading. I made an appointment to take Gwen to a local processor on January 15. We were going to take her to May’s in Taylorsville, but I’m afraid she won’t make that long a ride in the trailer. We cannot resell her meat using the local processor, but we’ll eat it. Gwen has more than paid for herself, but I won’t let her meat go to waste. January 15 is going to be a really bad day. Wally is taking the day off from work for moral support. Taking her to the local processor means that we can stay with her until she is killed; something we cannot do in Taylorsville. I wish local laws would allow us to kill and process all of our animals on the property rather than hauling them and leaving them in the hands of others.
We have been dumping oodles of money into feed and hay lately. Because the farm is essentially in its infancy, we have not had enough time to build up a padding of funds to pay for winter feed. If it had been raining on a regular basis, we’d still have pasture, but that hasn’t been the case. So we are feeding hay, lots of it. Having two less cows will help.
I installed six rabbit tractors outside the existing garden and bedded them down with straw. I’ll keep adding additional straw and leave them in place for several weeks. They’ll prepare the ground for six new raised beds. When the tractors are moved, the ground should be good and soft so that they can be double-dug as we’ve done for all of our beds. The raised beds will be eight feet by three feet. There is virtually no grass for the rabbits to eat now and they’ve been digging a lot so I made the decision to use them to help prepare new beds.
Driving to the Amish family’s farm is going to put a huge dent in my day. I was going to go and help a local farmer harvest vegetables, but Sampson is so much bigger than Reese, I’m afraid he’ll hurt him and Sampson needs to bond with the animals he’ll be protecting, not Reese, Rose or Gel. Amazingly, Sampson can still wiggle through field fencing, otherwise, he’d be installed in the goat pasture. The Amish family use electric netting around their chickens and I’m afraid Sampson is in for a rude awakening when he tries to wiggle through that.
Even though it’s 7:00, it’s still pretty dark out because it’s cloudy. We got some rain yesterday, but not near enough. I’ll have to cover the beds up this afternoon because it’s going to get cold again. Hopefully the seeds that I planted last week will germinate soon so I can plant the second set of them. I plan to get some more seeds in soon … it’s a constant juggling act getting everything done.
Until later …