Escapees / Steers / Festive cleaningRSS feed

Posted: Monday 23 December, 2019

by Rosemary at 4:57pm in Smallholding Comments closed

Monday 9th December to Friday 13th December

Lorna and  I had a good break – lots of swimming and cake. All was fine here except on Thursday night, about midnight, Dan heard cattle and they had escaped out on to the track. Normally this wouldn’t have been a big problem but the fence between the track and John and Linda’s garden was down, for the septic tank repair, and the big hole, full of water, was accessible. And Blizz looked interested. So poor Dan was out in the cold and dark, on his own, getting three very excited calves and an equally excited bull (the cows are far more chilled) back in the barn. He was pretty tired when we got home on Friday afternoon.

Saturday 14th December

Took hay to East Pitkerro – a bale’s lasting two weeks – and brought a second bale home. I’ll have to go and bed them this week. Gave them a fresh lick, although the old one isn’t quite done yet.

Did some further tidying in the greenhouse – it’s really just moving stuff to the potting shed or the trailer for the skip.

It was our 18th wedding anniversary, so had dinner at Dundee Rep, then went to see “Oor Wullie – the musical”. Fab!

Sunday 15th December

Cleaned out the hens and did a bit more in the greenhouse, then tidied up the cuttings and clippings from last weekend’s courses.

Monday 16th December

Changeable and showery. Annie was been a bit lame over the weekend and I”ve been bathing her foot and using A/B spray bit it hasn’t made any difference, so I called the vet out this morning – and asked if they could castrate Urquhart as well. He was booked for Wednesday but I’d rather not have two call outs in a week.

Laura and Catherine came out; we had him in the field shelter early. So that’s it done. He was lightly sedated and had a local anaesthetic, plus painkiller / anti-inflam and an antibiotic, so fingers crossed he’ll be OK. I put Teddy in with him at teatime.

Annie also seems better – she has a split in her off hind hoof, so she’s had A/B and painkiller / anti-inflam, but if it recurs, it will need remedial trimming. Sod’s law that they’ve just been done.

Mickey, Linda’s Yorkie, found a baby hedgehog this morning – he weighed 375g, so we knew he was too small to survive the winter. The vet took him to the surgery for a check up but sadly he had a foot missing and his leg was very swollen so we decided it was kinder to let him go. I’m off to buy a plastic crate that we can use as a hedgehog feeding station.

Septic Tank man was here but there doesn’t seem to be much progress.

Tuesday 17th December

Cool and damp. I forgot to let the hens out this morning – remembered about 2pm. Poor things. Annie is much improved and Urquhart seems fine, which is great.

Went riding this morning with Tara and Rebecca; the Buddon was open so we made our first journey down there (Smokey and I – the others have been before) then spent an hour in the polytunnel, weeding.

A digger has arrived at last so fingers crossed for the septic tank repairs. I spent a happy couple of hours tidying up all the spare bottles and jars and cleaning out the pantry – order is being restored.

Wednesday 18th December

Woke at 3.30am. The pantry is now spotless. And I baked. I’ll be shattered by bedtime. Went shopping. Dan likes shopping (for food) so from January, he’s going to do a monthly shop.

Thursday 19th December

Another wee ride out with Tara, who rode Ave and led Euro.

Friday 20th December

No idea what I did today – faffed about with directions for the journey to Aberdeen tomorrow to pick up our steer. Gwenna ran off when I let them out fro their last comfort break – so I put up the decorations while I waited for her. Still waiting on the festive spirit to strike.

Put a new bale of hay in for the ewes, but moved it into Sheepfold. First bale lasted two weeks – there’s no grass though. They’re outside for fresh air an exercise only.

The septic tank saga continues. It’s getting depressing.

Saturday 21st December

Had a good run up to Robert and Lisa Ramsay’s to pick up Charlie, a six month Shetland steer to partner Archie. The new Aberdeen Bypass is fab! He was all ready to go so we did a trailer to trailer, and set off. He’s tiny compared to ours.

On the way there, I decided to move both Archie and Zephyr to East Pitkerro. The folk who have bought Zeph are proving somewhat elusive about her collection; she’s eight months now and a big girl, so I decided she was better away from her Daddy and with steers who lack the equipment to get her into trouble.

Unloading Charlie, loading and unloading ours went fine – Charlie IS tiny. Just hope the big boys soon tire of pushing them around. Wee Charlie looks s bit shell shocked, although he’s been running with a bull and two bigger steers. Ace, Annie and Rosie aren’t very happy.

Sunday 22nd December

Septic tank men here today. The Boss has promised it will be done before Christmas.

Popped down to East Pitkerro – Wee Charlie, Zeph and Archie are getting a bit of a hard time – but maybe Ruaridh and Rocky were just showing off for our benefit. Put a lovely new bed in for them. Cows still bawling, but Ace has given up.

Decided to work through the paperwork this afternoon, in the dark so that I can ride tomorrow. And clean out the hens. And collect hay. Lots of hay.

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