Sunday, January 16

Some new photos

 I hadn't taken any photos around the farm lately.  I never seem to devote time to lugging the camera around and cell-phone camera images just don't cut it for me most of the time.  I went out midday today and snapped a few shots:

Molly is one of our 4 LGDs (livestock guard dogs).  She's getting a little face rubbing action in this photo.

I walked out to the front pasture and of course was greated by Bear.  After some attention he went back to work.  Here he is on the look-out.

Bulldog, one of our wethers from the 2010 fall kidding season, was curious about the camera I was carrying around.  I finally got him to hold still long enough and stay far enough away that I could get a photo of him in focus.  He's quite the little man and is destined for the show ring.

I moved to the Nubian pasture where Jack was on patrol.  Good old reliable Jack-Jack keeps the dariy goats safe 24/7.

In the Nubian pasture everyone was crowding around to see, smell, or get a nibble of the curious device around my neck.  I snapped this one shooting almost directly into the sun with Harmony between me and the sky.  I rather like this shot.

Saturday, January 15

Winter Update

True to form, my lovely wife Jennifer, continues to diversify the farm "portfolio."  We're raising seven feeder pigs that we purchased from a local Amish guy.  We agreed we would raise one for ourselves to butcher and maybe one or two to raise and sell.  Jennifer sent out a quick e-mail to people we thought might be interested and now we've got 7 little piggies.

I had no idea pigs were so strong!  They're little power-packed balls of muscle.  These little piggies did in fact "squeal all the way home" in goat tote in the back of the truck.  They obviously were not handled extensively as they're quite excitable.  I had read that it takes solid fence and some hot wire to contain them so we fixed up one of our smaller pens (about 1/4 acre maybe) as the new pig lot.  It has good solid fence around it and now has one strand of electric fence about 4 inches off the ground all along the perimeter.  Pigs like to root up things and can easily root right under a fence.  And there's a reason that some rodeo's have a pig catching event: if you're not a participant it's hilarious to watch, because it's really hard to catch a loose piglet!  I want no part of pig catching outside this pen...

The piggies picture above are going to town on some slop, quite a sight to see.  They are finally getting to the point where they realize that we're not a threat.  When we first got them the slightest sight of us would momentarily stop them in their tracks with a quick "snort" before they would bolt the opposite direction.  Now they recognize and associate us with the slop bucket.  Jennifer and our latest WWOOFER volunteer, Kyle, have a hesitation with the pigs coming so close to them when feeding.  They're both, perhaps rightly so, nervous that the little piggies will start to nibble on them.  I guess they won't be little piggies for very long.  Kyle blames Jennifer for corrupting him with the idea that they might like to eat him.

Speaking of Kyle, he's been great to have on the farm.  He and Jennifer have been very productive while I'm away at the day job.  Our involvement with the WWOOFER has been nothing but positive so far.  It's been great meeting new people from all over, making new friends, and sharing ideas all while working together on the farm towards a common goal.  I highly recommend it.