Monday, 29 July 2013

calf watch and foster sheep

We are expecting our first calf of the season (John tells me any day), so we are on calf-watch, particularly as this cow had her first calf last year and it did not survive the birth - we have our fingers crossed that there are no issues this time around.

I love new calves. Just so sweet.

Here's the mum-to-be:


The foster sheep. Here she is on my morning round checking to see whether we had a new calf.


So, how did we get a foster sheep? Our nearest neighbour has a couple of acres - not enough to do much with and a hassle to mow, so she bought 3 sheep to do the job for her. Around 2 years ago one of sheep died, and during summer the second one was killed by wild dogs. This poor, old girl didn't much like being by herself and kept pushing through the fences to join our small cow herd. It's so funny to see her running behind the cows when we herd them into a new paddock (she's very old and the run just about kills her, but there's no way she's going to be left behind). We call our cows and there she is, ears pricked up ready to move paddock, eat some hay, whatever. The cows don't worry about her so we just leave her be. We are planning to get a couple of Dorper sheep to breed for the freezer, so she may be happy in a paddock with them if she hasn't convinced herself that she is a cow by then.