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Showing posts from September, 2016

Hay !

Although the cows at La Singlarie are free ranging the fields there is not a lot of grass for them so hay is on the menu from now on. Now hay does vary, some is delicious we can't get enough of it and some is well were hungry so we will eat it, some is a bit brambly and weedy and some bits may not of dried out enough when it was bailed. The later was served to the cows the other day.

They sifted through the good bits and left the bad bits which have to be taken away and disposed of, usually to be burnt. A pile of old wood, off cuts from the laurel bushes and weeds has been built in the small field where the donkeys are waiting to be burnt. This is where the old hay has been placed as well. Only a donkey would eat this hay, two donkeys who are so starved they forget the morning and evening ritual of carrot and fresh hay given and have been relegated to eat the left overs.

If they had the number for the SPA here I'm sure they would be on the phone constantly, (also if they didn…

Snap shot

A moment from the week at La Singlarie

"Cows to the left of us, cows to the right here I am stuck in the middle with you". "Yes Bambou but if you look really closely my ears are behaving like cows, shall we start mooing"?

Coming on

It has been a week since one of our cows had her emergency Cesarean and thankfully she is doing really well, she had a bit of a high temperature at the beginning of the week but after two antibiotic injections she will be let out tomorrow to join the herd. Her and her calf who is also absolutely fine and feeding well have been in the hanger for the week to let her get over the operation as the hustle and bustle of herd life may of interfered with her stitches healing, the fight for best position at the hay and with the free range of walking the fields may of been a bit much.

Vanille and Bambou have been keeping her company, chatting over the gate. They are a bit fed up being turfed out of the bestest place ever (the hanger), not sure why they love it so much in there and we have had a week of unbroken sleep as those donkeys love to make a noise clanger the metal fences, at least it hasn't rained on them.

The calf, another male has had his ear tags put in and a band put round his …

Tomato envy

Farmer J came back from dropping off sausages to our French farmer with a present of these huge tomatoes, merci / thank you Pierrot (Pierrot the cockerels dad) and Eline.

Next year my tomatoes are going to be this impressive, I can only hope dream !

Emergency C section

So yesterday our second calf of this year was born, sadly not so easily as the first. Mum went into labour late morning but by 3pm no signs of her progressing appeared, after manoeuvring the herd from one field to another, putting up temporary fencing along the way we managed to get mum into the hanger and called our vet. Saturday afternoons they are shut so we had to wait our turn for the emergency on call vet to come, which he did at 4pm.

On examination the calf was very big, to big for her to give birth naturally so an emergency cesarean was on the cards. An operation made a little easier when the cow is standing, this cow once locked down was having none of it and laid down, perhaps a little tired. After trying to push her up and farmer J using a winch we hadn't got very far so the procedure would have to be done with her laying down. The vet asked if we were squemish, twelve years ago I would of said yes but now I can handle most things in the animal way. The only problem is…

Oh my

It has been an unusual late afternoon. There will be a explanation and photos tomorrow and a bit of blood. It's 9.45pm and I just sat down with a glass of wine and a crisp sandwich after taking Sorrel for a very delayed dark walk.

Rain and smelly dog

We have finally got rain, farmer J is happy. We now also that have wet dog smell in the kitchen. I see a dog coat in the making.

It's Like searching for a needle in a haystack when hunting for a calf

Saturday morning we had the first calf of 2016 arrive to a first time mum. if I hadn't seen her licking it I would of said it was a deer in the field (it was far away and my eyesight is starting to deteriorate) but no farmer J went to check it was OK and a calf, which it was and a male.

Role on Saturday evening with farmer J ready to place its ear tags in while mum was far enough away. It is best to get the tags in sooner than later as when first born they are a lot easier to handle and if done really quickly they haven't enough time to call out alerting mum, who may be an angry cow and the rest of the herd come running to see what's going on. However this calf was not having any of it, he was really lively already. Best left a while till he calms down and sleeps again.

Sunday morning he was no where to be seen, not with mum or in any of the fields or woods. Farmer J looked, I looked. He went one way I went the other. We looked again before lunch, scouring the edge of the…

Snap shot

A moment the week at La Singlarie

My tomato plants got rot on the bottoms of the tomatoes. The old sows tomatoes are doing really well in her enclosure - I cant believe a pig can grow better tomatoes, she doesn't even do anything to them or eat them. May have to give the veg patch over to her next year!

No rain, No internet

Here in the Aveyron we have had no rain for weeks, it has been hot, hot, hot. It is all looking a bit dry around the countryside, except for the weeds that seem to survive - how do they do that?

Yesterday the cows at La Singlarie were given hay, thankfully we have a good stock for the winter so we should be OK, it's around six weeks earlier than when they usually start to eat hay. Were not alone nearly all the framers around are feeding hay early.

Our Internet stopped working too, no phone, no emails, no Internet and no radio but thankfully wee are back on and we did have a little bit of rain this morning. Nothing to make a difference to the dry fields and gardens but it has been a lovely cool day with no sun so weeding in the veggie garden was lovely, just hope those weeds that have grown so well don't reappear.