Well once again for the third time in less than three weeks I spent over 4 hours plowing snow, and it's still snowing. This storm another nor'easter has dumped over 20 inches of snow, following the 8 inches we got on the weekend, and of course the Christmas Blizzard which dumped just about 3 feet in two days. I am running out of room to pile all the snow. The snowbanks are as high as my bobcat bucket will lift, better than 12 feet. I thought we were going to be dealing with global warming, but the past two winters have been as cold and snowy as I can ever remember. This year's snow is unlike any that I can recall, and they are forcasting an Alberta clipper on the weekend and maybe another big storm on Tuesday/Wednesday of next week. Fortunately the animals are handling the snow very well, better than I am I'm sure. Zenyatta, my 4 month old Corgi puppy just loves the snow. This morning she raced out the door and immediately was gone under the deep snow, all I could see was the tops of her ears. She then began hopping on her back legs, and almost doggy-paddling with her front feet to try to get herself above the snow level. She has to wait for the other dogs to make a path first, then she can move off of the porch. She was so impatient this morning, that the poor thing had to relieve herself on the porch as she couldn't wait for the older dogs to "plow the way".
Even with all the snow and cold, the animals know spring is not too far off. My geese have begun to pair up and have started squabbling with each other as they do, during breeding season.
I have one female llama that is due to give birth in just about a month and she is as big as a house. There is another one due in early March, both much earlier than what I breed for, but both girls came to me from other parts of the country where the climate is a bit more moderate than here. I am really hoping that we get the worst part of winter now and maybe just maybe we will get a more moderate late winter/early spring when these babies are due. I am working on a plan to be able to move them into a portable stall in the garage (which is heated) for a day or two when the crias are born. Just until they are up on their feet and eating well. Once they figure out where to find a meal, and have had a couple of good feedings they should be good to move outside with the rest of the herd. I am really looking forward to both of these babies, and an early spring! : )
I had a chance to do some more work on the website today. I have finally gotten a few of the llamas listed, all my 2010 crias. There is still a bunch more to go, but it will be a while before I get it all done, check back often for updates.
The fox hunt continues. This morning it came running thru one of the goose pens but it was still very dark and it only appeared for a few seconds. I waited for about another hour and it did not return. Yesterday I was hiding in a spot where I thought I could get a clear shot at it, but the term "smart as a fox" never meant more than it does now. I have a flock of young chickens, my future egg producers which are housed seperately from the rest of the older birds. Yesterday as I was on fox patrol, one of those young pullets managed to squeeze out of a small opening in the pen. It was just getting light and as I stood there watching her begin to scratch at some feed that I had dropped the night before, I saw some movement out of the corner of my eye. It was the fox. As it trotted toward the enclosure with the half grown chickens in it, the one bird that was out caught her eye. Before I could get a bead on it, it was in full pursuit of my future layer. They ran around the coop twice, each time at such a speed that there was no way I could safely take a shot. Then it was quiet and neither re-appeared out the other side. I hoped the chicken had taken cover underneath the coop which is far enough off the ground for her to get under but not the fox. I didn't want to reveal myself hoping that the fox would come trotting around the corner looking for an easier target, but there was nothing. No noise, no movement, nothing. I waited for about another thirty minuets until I was pretty sure there was no chance of the fox coming back around, then went and looked behind the coop. Unfortunately, all that was there was a handful of colorful feathers obviously from the pullet that was out. I looked over the fence into the neighbors yard and saw the remnants of her. The fox had captured her just behind the coop and then went up and over our fifty inch fence into the neighbors yard where she promptly devoured the pullet.
This is really discouraging maybe tomorrow will bring better luck!!!
Well I finally think that I have figured out most of this web creating process. I spent almost the entire day on Sunday creating my first website. I had fumbled around with it once or twice before, but always got frustrated and gave up. Sunday I decided that my goal was to keep at it until I at least had enough to post without embarrassing myself. So here it is.