Saturday 8 December 2012

Another week

This was for the most part a fairly normal week.
The temperatures dropped from a balmy -15C to a rather shocking -25.
The weather was stormy, windy and grey for the most part.

After kind of getting used to the -15 temperature range it requires always some readjustment when things get 10 degrees colder.
Everything gets crunchy,
the snowy,
my bones,
my brain..

This week started off badly.
Two of our breeding bulls lay dead in the pasture on Monday.
It looked like they may have got  into a major bull fight..
Not only is this a financial blow,
 but  also a guilt feeling.
They died on my watch...

Anyway, we cannot change that now, so we have lots of prime beef for the dogs now.

With the cold the feed requirement of all the animals spike.
This means more bales need to be put out for the animals.
Most of my days are spent feeding right now.

Come and join me for a day of feeding..
Once the tractor is running ( requires a few hours first on the block heater and battery charger)
I drive to the hay yard way out back.
I usually collect three at a time, two bales on the front end loader and one on the back.
I normally feed 8 to 10 bales to the sheep per time.

I move these bales to the winter corral,
there I cut off the net wrap and twine.
I then lift each bale over the fence with the tractor and plonk it down on the other side of the fence..
I have to pay attention not to drop a bale on the sheep...
Once this is done it is time for Lad to gather  up the sheep and remove them from this pasture and to tie up the guardian dogs so that I can roll out the bales without fear of squashing them.

Once the sheep are locked out I then use the front end loader to roll the bales out.
I never roll them out completely, just enough so that all the sheep can eat at the same time.
Once this is done the sheep can return to the field to eat and the guardian dogs can be freed.

Fena always likes a lookout, so she always lays on the top of the bales.
Can you see her?
The horses also want a new bale and wait expectantly at the gate..
as they guilt trip me,
I feed them an extra bale...

The cows did need some new bales,
they always wait for me at the gate when they require more food.

Lad helps back the cows away from the gate so that I can drive in
and he makes sure they do not exit through the open gate while I drive up and down.
Thanks Lad!

So, that about wraps up the outside feeding.
All these pictures were taken with my telephone camera so the quality is not great but you get the idea..

I also needed to weigh a few hundred lambs this week.

The cold kind of slows things down,
the gates of my drafter are at times a bit slow.
However, that job also got done this week.

The annual live Nativity play was held last night.
We always bring our sheep..
 and this isthen also our annual church trip.

and the crowd went wild...
 High Prairie is not what you would descibe as a quaint little western town.
It does have some redeeming qualities though.
Every Christmas  the whole main street is filled with Christmas lights and it is a treat to drive through our town at night.

Today, was once again cold but little Roxy warmed my heart.
Today was the day she decided that she was a sheepdog.
She decided to step in and help move the nativity sheep back to their own barn.
What I saw, made my heart beat a little quicker.. who  knows maybe I do have a worthy replacement for my dear Lad in a few years time.

Not only did Roxy warm my heart but the sun also decided to peak out from behind the clouds and warmed my African soul.

Have a great weekend.

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