Wednesday, 5 January 2011

New Year

Rain has taken over from snow but at least that means that the animals can get to the grass now and we are hoping that the ones who lost a bit of weight will make it up over the next few weeks.  It is certainly  easier getting around the farm.

Nick and I have made a start on trimming toe nails and have done all the small groups - males, weanlings, alpacas at livery and next week will finish off the main herd who are grazing the winter paddocks.   With only a couple of exceptions they were all very well behaved and easy to handle. We also took the opportunity to trim topknots as sometimes the fleece on the alpacas' heads (the bonnet) grows too long and interferes with their sight.   This can make them easily "spooked" and even make eating more difficult for them.  I don't think I will get a job as a hairdresser but at least they look neater.

The annual vaccinations are also coming up soon, and the girls in the winter paddocks will be drenched with Fasinex at the end of March to make sure they have not picked up fluke.

Mike has managed to source a few more small bales of hay so it looks like we will be alright for the rest of winter as long as we don't get another prolonged period of snow covered grass.   His new tractor came into its own as he was able to lift the  bales into the hay loft with it very quickly.  In the past we have either hand balled them or used a manual hoist both of which were quite time consuming.

The chickens are not doing very well at the moment.   They have very good appetites but are only laying one or two eggs a day.   Definitely a hobby and not an earner!!   Still it is nice to see them wandering around and they are very amusing sometimes, especially if we put some bread or something out for them.   They all waddle over noisily and at speed.

I put all the 2010 weanlings up for sale on the website this week.   Unusually for us we had mostly boys and although a couple are good enough the show, most of them will be sold as pets/fibre producers/guards.   One boy with a really lovely fleece has a big black spot right in the middle of his back, which is a real disappointment as otherwise he has a lot going for him.

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