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  • Writer's pictureTina

Farm Update



My little Aggie girl with little spotted Blythe on my lap. Baby goats are the best.


We have officially welcomed spring and are thrilled to send winter packing. However, winter is not going away without a fight. The past few days have been cold and dreary, and there have even been snowflakes in the air. I am ready to return to warmer temperatures and steady weather patterns. Here on the farm, spring is in the air. The fields and pastures are beginning to turn green, buds are sprouting on the trees, the daffodils my Grandma Tilly planted by the spring house are up, and baby goats are bouncing around the fields.


We currently have eleven baby goats. I am pleased to share that all is well with the mamas and babies so far. Scheduling later delivery dates has significantly impacted their overall health and wellness. Everyone is healthy, happy, and thriving. All eleven babies are now bouncy and playful. The pure Nubian babies are a little slower getting their feet under them, but they have much longer legs to learn to maneuver than the stout little Boer goats. Cindy Crawford's baby, Aggie, continues to be the farm favorite. She is an absolute delight. She is now standing on our shoulders, climbing on our backs, and jumping into our laps when we sit down. I have never seen a baby this friendly and outgoing who is not a bottle baby.


I am also happy to share that all moms are attentive and nurturing. No one has rejected a baby, no one has delivered their babies and abandoned them, and no one has injured their little ones either on purpose or accidentally. Socks, our fuzzy brown Boer doe, left her little ones in the pasture field last night. When The Bibbed Wonder did the evening feeding and barn check, he counted and recounted the baby goats to discover two were missing. He had to take a flashlight to the pasture field and scour the field for the babies. They were cuddled up together, sleeping. I liken this to a human mom saying to an obstinant toddler, "It's time to go inside. If you don't come now, I am leaving. Okay, I'm going." Most children will follow reluctantly. I believe the baby goats refused to go, and Socks decided enough was enough and left them. This is why being observant and diligent during baby season is essential.


We are pleased that our new bucks, Ace and Ollie, seem to throw more doelings than bucklings. Ace and Fauna delivered a beautiful Nubian buckling we named Donald. We are following the alphabet with names. Fauna's triplets have landed on the letter D, so we have Donald, Daisy, and Dellie. I am encouraging The Bibbed Wonder to keep Donald intact and sell him as a herd sire. I believe he will make someone a beautiful buck when he is grown. He also has a quiet, gentle disposition and is friendly and cuddly. His mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother are gentle, intelligent, and excellent milk producers. Someone would be very lucky to have him as their herd sire. Of the eleven babies born, we only have four bucklings. I consider this a good thing.


Other things happening here on the farm include the geese again laying eggs. However, as in years past, something comes in each night and eats the eggs. I would like to put up a trail camera to capture the image of what is doing this. My bib overall-wearing buddy wants to set a trap and catch it in the act. Catching the hungry egg gobbler will be its demise, and I don't want to be part of that. We currently have twelve adult geese, and I feel our flock is big enough to enjoy. However, I am not against purchasing goslings and hand-raising them. I would like to expand our flock to include fruffle geese, buff geese, and greylag geese(the breed of my sweet Goostavia).


I believe my husband is ill. He has been exceptionally agreeable to my farm family expansion ideas lately. He never agrees to anything without a great show of nay-saying. I know he will give in. He knows he will give in. It's just the getting to the giving in that makes me exhausted. Last week, we went to the feed store. On the way, I negotiated twenty-five baby chicks of various breeds and egg-laying colors. He tried to talk me down to ten. However, he gave up fairly quickly, and I ordered thirty. I asked him if he felt okay, and he grunted and mumbled something about me being spoiled. On April 26th, my thirty baby chicks will arrive, and I can't wait. My girls are getting older, their laying is inconsistent, and I am excited for new, colorful breeds of chickens.


I also have the hair-brained idea of getting the funny face, which is so ugly that only a mother could love Kun Kun Pigs. On Saturday, my bib overall-wearing buddies' last two pigs will go to the market. I feel bad that his pigs have become infertile, and he can no longer rationalize keeping them. We have doctored them, had extensive blood work done multiple times, changed feed, and changed boars, and nothing has worked. It has been almost two years, and the situation is not improving. I have no love for the seven-hundred-pound temperamental monstrosities, but my husband adores them. We have been looking at "exotic" breeds for fun and curiosity. Kun Kun Pigs are small; they max out at two hundred pounds. Two hundred pounds is about the size of our largest goat. The breed is known for being gentle, personable, and intelligent. They are also less destructive and don't root as much. Best of all, and what won me over, is they eat snakes!


We have a water snake problem. Our large pond is home to at least a dozen aggressive, baby goose-eating, five-foot-long, or larger water snakes. If I happen upon a water snake while walking the pond's perimeter, I am prepared to run because they come after me. The Bean will not venture near the pond. Giant snakes can be seen basking on the rocks at the pond's edge and on the island in the middle of the pond. I am afraid to build a duck house or buy my dream floating duck house because I know it will be overrun with water snakes. I understand snakes have their place in the ecosystem, but we are inundated with nasty, aggressive, slithering beasts. The snakes eat what my dad called his "bully frogs," and they eat the fish. Also, I don't like snakes, especially ones that aren't afraid of me.


So, dear reader, here is my plan. I plan to purchase baby Kun Kun pigs, raise them as pets, unleash them in the pasture that encloses the pond, and have them take care of my large water snake problem. I then plan to build my duck house, or, even better, take advantage of my husband's illness, which is causing him to say yes to all my ideas, and buy a floating duck house, then get Muscovy ducks to eat all the baby snakes. When the snake population is under control, I plan to get fruffle ducks. I am a mastermind, an agricultural genius, if you will. Also, I have no intention of finding a cure for what ails Eric. It's nice not to be told no a thousand times when I know he will say yes anyway. Sigh.


As part of my "snake population control" plan, I also plan to add peacocks and peahens to the farm family. I believe if I can create a use and rationale for all the fun critters I want, he will continue to say yes to my ideas. Peacocks will be Stage II of my plan. I must research peacocks' housing and care needs before presenting Stage II to The Bibbed Wonder. Now, I must find a rationale for miniature Scottish Highland cows, miniature donkeys, and retired Amish workhorses. I have a lot of ideas. It's a good thing my bib overall wearing fuzzy bottoms adores me. I even feel like I am a lot sometimes. Insert a wink.


So, dear reader, that is what is happening here on the farm. Don't forget that on May 4th, you are invited to join us for our Springtime at the Farm event. You can see little Aggie in person, along with the other babies. My chicks will be here, too. Of course, so will my human friends with their lovely creations and delicious food. On this chilly spring day, stay safe, be smart, and keep washing your hands.

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rcduman
rcduman
Mar 20

You are on a roll 😉

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LOVE the photo!

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