Has spring finally arrived?, I think so! The signs are looking good, the first of the swallows arrived back in the stables at the beginning of the week.
Plus wall to wall sunshine and the fields are full of lush green grass. All of the alpacas, after stuffing themselves on said lush green grass are spending the afternoons fast asleep in the sun. Spring is here, Happy Days!!!!
The swallows aren’t the only avian arrivals, a week or so ago a racing pigeon appeared on top of the barn and from the looks of it, has decided to stay. If any of you out there have lost a pigeon, who’s flight path could of taken it over our part of Wiltshire, Larry Lost is now residing on top of the barn, please feel free to come collect him. The best time would be about 3pm when he pops down to share the chickens afternoon treat of mixed corn. Larry Lost is one smart pigeon, soon to be one very fat pigeon if how much he consumes is anything to go by 🙂
Spring is a busy time on the farm, this is the time of year when us livestock farmers get to wear our arable farmers hats for a while. For us the only difference is our crop, for us our vital crop is grass.
Believe it or not paddocks full of good grass takes a bit of work. As livestock farmers the decisions we make throughout the year are a balancing act between the needs of our herds and protecting the land that they graze on. Damage caused by extreme weather and bad management over the winter months leads to a slow grass recovery and as an alpaca farmer who now has females coming into the final stages of their pregnancies, good grass at this time of year is imperative. Spring jobs include chain harrowing, adding a vitamin and mineral mix to the soil, spot reseeding and getting an early start on killing the weeds that have already started to appear. I hate those weeds!
Luckily for us little damage was caused to the land this winter, through the worst of the weather, the herd resided in the barn and were waited on hand, foot and finger by yours truly 🙂
Trouble is they love the barn too much and we have had to have words, haven’t we Dora!, as they are still insistent of an evening, its in the barn they want to be 🙂
Words with Dora as usual didn’t work and plan B was put into action, time for the barn to have it’s annual spring clean. Now it has been emptied and scrubbed to within an inch of its life, Dora has sensibly decided the barn is no longer where she wants to be 🙂