Tuesday, 28 April 2009
I was cleaning the caravan ready to go back to its parking spot when I looked out and saw that Moonstone was lying on her side with a small rugby ball sticking out of her bottom. My previous experience told me that actually she was giving birth at last.
She kept trying to lie down and when standing up kept trying to look at the cria being born. Finally she lay down on her side and Mike punctured the foetal sac to enable the cria to breathe and this allowed his legs to come out too. I took over the watch as we were still worried that she was having problems. She kept standing up and lying down and eventually settled for staying on her side which was quite practical as the cria's head was resting on the ground rather than being pushed into it. I helped the cria out and Moonstone quickly got up and started nuzzling him. As it was nice and sunny I decided to leave them alone and let the baby roll around on the grass for a while which they do to rub off the mucus which surrounds their body.
A few minutes later the sun went in and it seemed very cold so I decided to rub him dry with a towel and spray his naval to prevent infection.
Well - if I was a human's midwife I think the Mum would have bought me chocolates - but Moonstone rewarded me by working up a mega spit which covered my whole back and shoulders. Luckily I was wearing a shower proof jacket.
He is a lovely fawn cria and started to try and stand almost immediately, was soon feeding from his Mum and has been running round with Julia, the other cria in his paddock.
The grass is growing fast now as are the docks and stinging nettles. Mike has been strimming today, I have been spreading Grasstrak on some of the paddocks and we are hoping to keep ahead of the weeds as much as possible.
We are only getting six eggs a day at the moment so we think that there must be a stash somewhere as all the chickens are looking healthy and none seem to be broody. I hope we find them soon or it will be too late.