Monday, July 6, 2015

More Fun at the Farm

For the last couple of weeks, we have spent a lot of time at the farm.  The rains we had in June have moved on, and the weather has been more typical of early summer…hot and humid!  The pastures are green, though, and the milkweed pods have burst and are scattering their seeds.

In spite of a few maintenance issues with the skid steer and one of our air conditioners, we have accomplished a lot.  Perhaps the most noticeable change has been the addition of a flagstone walkway from the parking lot to the front door.  Here’s a work-in-progress photo.  

And here is the finished product!  We’re thrilled, not only with the look, but with the fact that no longer will we track in mud and debris as we enter the house! 

We have had fun with my brother and his extended family on the weekends.  My great nieces and nephews, Noah, Rachel, Jamey and Laura are very busy and always a joy. 

Last weekend Laura climbed the rose arbor with her brother, Jamey, and cousin, Noah, to play “look no hands” while we all held our collective breath until she was safely back on the ground.

When we arrived on Thursday, we found B4 with a brand-new baby bull calf.  When I sent a photo to my friend, Kathy, she said, “He looks just like a panda.”  So I guess that will be his name.  

We were somewhat concerned because the new baby seemed more lethargic than he should be.  In fact, when we found him curled up at the edge of a briar patch, he didn't move when we touched him, but his eyes were bright and his ears alert.

John and I lifted him to his feet and pointed him toward his mother, who had been calling to him.  He was happy to see her, and followed her off to a corner of the coastal field.  The next day, the same thing happened.  B4 was hanging out with her sisters, but the calf was nowhere to be found.  After I began searching the area, B4 mooed softly and went to her baby.  He was curled up by a fence, still as a mouse.

Again, he did not respond to his mother's calls so I lifted him to his feet and he walked over to her and began to nurse.

We continue to be on maternity watch for B8 cow, but so far doesn’t seem to be in any hurry.  There are other maternity watches going on, however.  On Allan and Jef’s front door is a cardinal nest with four eggs.  It’s in a pretty precarious location, so we hope no harm comes to eggs or babies.

And then, on Thursday of last week while on my walk I noticed a turkey vulture flying away from an old elevated deer blind that we no longer use.  On Friday, the vulture again flew away as we approached, and this time it was clear it came from inside the blind.  The ladder is still in place, so I carefully climbed up to have a look.  Sure enough, Mrs. Buzzard has repurposed the deer blind and made her “nest” on the floor.  You can see her two eggs on the carpet.  

We’ll be watching this nest as well to see these babies when they hatch!

It was a great time to be at the farm, and it had a fitting end.  Cousins Kathy and Eric came to celebrate the Fourth of July, and we had a great visit.

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