Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Pink Sunrise

We received a small layer of snow Saturday night.  The temperatures also dropped and the lake is slowly beginning to ice over.  For the most part, though, our weather has been very mild.

The adult rams have been moved to their winter pen: which is one of the two round pens built out of horse panels lined with no-climb horse fence.  In a week or two we will split the rams up and add ewes to each of their pens.

The ramlings are stationed out by the lambing shed with a roll of electronet.  If I can spare the money, I'm going to buy a few cattle panels to make a pen so the electronet can be put away for the season.  Sometime in January, when I dismantle breeding groups, the little boys can go to the smaller, abandoned, round pen near the big boys.  I have learned not to pen ramlings with adult rams as the little guys don't get much to eat with the big guys guarding the hay piles all day.

The ewes are still out on pasture with electronet.  Hopefully this weekend I will have the time to bring them up to their winter pen.  I'm still trying to devise a round bale feeder.  Ideally, I would splurge on the
Premier 1 specialized panels.  But I think I'll have to make do with something homemade.  Once again, as finances allow.

Below is Shachah, all decked out in his Blaze Orange collar.  So cute! 
As Becky suggested, we brought Shachah in the house during the day for Deer Hunting Opener.  Unfortunately, we have heated floors and he was so hot and uncomfortable that he tried to get out every time we opened the door.  The next morning we couldn't even catch him, much less get him to come near the house.  So we went to Plan B: during the day, Meg stays in the house, Greta stays in the outdoor kennel, and Shachah is free.  Shachah won't leave Greta behind, except to check his yard/pasture perimeter.  So it is working.  We just have to be super careful to not let Greta out to play before dark.

I had to laugh...the other evening I let Greta out on my way to do chores.  Shachah was so excited to see her out of the kennel and available for play that he charged toward her.  In his exuberance he plowed into her and sent her rolling.  Greta was completely overwhelmed and not a little shocked.  She tucked her tail between her legs and retreated to the porch for good that night. 
Poor Shachah had no idea why she didn't want to play. 
Poor Greta, to be the unsuspecting landing pad for a dog more than double her own weight.


Becky Utecht said...

Oh-oh, email does it again! I didn't mean to suggest that you keep him in the house, just that you keep him penned up tight during the day. I know he digs under thing fences, so that would be hard. Thankfully deer season is half over and it looks like he's doing well. I just love that orange collar. And I love reading your stories about him. Sounds like he really likes poor Greta!
This winter he might need to come in the house to warm up for a couple hours to keep his arthritis under control, but with that heavy coat, he won't stay in too long. Thank you for giving him such a good home.
Beautiful photo of the sky and the lake too.

Tammy said...

I think Ashley (my collie)can relate to Greta! She has a hard time with Boone sometimes. She can run lots faster than he can, but sometimes she messes up and the bulldozer gets her. As far as a home made big round bale feeder. I use a 16 foot cattle panel with some of the holes cut out bigger (for the larger sheep). I turn the big bales on their ends, wrap the panel around and wire it tightly. I then cover the top with a tarp. Sometimes I have to end up pulling the hay out from the middle because they can't reach it towards the end. Eventually for the last two to three days of eating, I'll take off the panel and let them dig around for the last of it. This works really good for the non horned stock, but is a two person job to hold the panel tight and wire it shut.

Sabrina Wille Erickson said...

Thank you for the round bale feeder idea, Tammy.

Becky, I'll be quite honest...Shachah comes in the house whenever he pleases. :D As in, Shachah does what Shachah wants to do! Not that he misbehaves or anything. He's just a big boy. :) He usually comes in the house every couple days. It's just that we can't always get him to do what we want him to do if he is not in agreement. :)

Becky Utecht said...

I just saw this response Sabrina. I know EXACTLY what you mean about Shachah. He's really got a presence about him and a mind of his own. It's a good thing he's sensible and trustworthy. And it's a good thing you have a place that allows him the freedom to be himself. Now that the snow is here again, the paddock that he used to guard seems so empty without him.