Health Plans / Udders / PoniesRSS feed

Posted: Monday 6 March, 2023

by Rosemary at 9:06am in Smallholding Comments closed

Monday 27th February

No frost but bitterly cold and damp this morning. Alistair, our vet was here this afternoon, updating our health plan and helping me put together a parasite control plan, based the result of our worm and fluke test. The Scottish Government are giving a grant to farmers to test and act on the professional advice, although we’d done the testing before I knew about the grant.

Our bull is going on a “working holiday” from mid-April until the end of June; the folk we buy our hay from have two Aberdeen Angus heifers that they want to get in calf. It suits me to have him away over calving – Ace was a total doofus when we had new calves. Grey might be fine but it’s easier (and safer) if he’s four miles up the road.  Of course, he will need to be quarantined and blood tested when he comes back to comply with our health scheme.

So as well as doing the health plan, I’m working on a timetable that marries together calving, foot trimming, BVD testing the calves, blood testing the cows and blood testing and quarantining Grey. Without it all costing a fortune. I have a draft.


Tuesday 28th February

Dan walked to Monifieth and back with his pal, Phil. They took Bryn. I walked Gwenna. Bryn was very tired.

BrynBryn, tired.

The early peas and sweet peas are coming away.

Wednesday 1st March

I asked Dan to find me a wee solar water pump for the “soon to be” water feature. He insisted on checking if said water feature held water reliably. It does.

troughWater feature to be.

And I set my Caledonian Rose seed taties to chit in the classroom. They actually have some good sprouts already; I might stick a couple or four in the polytunnel.

Caledonian RoseCaledonian Rose, chitting.

Thursday 2nd March

Vet was here this morning to do Smokey’s annual health check and to rasp his teeth. As always, he was very good – no sedation required.  Afterwards, I turned Gracie and him out in the old pigpen and where the caravan is. They can eat that off.

poniesGracie and Smokey.

The vet also gave Blizz an antibiotic, as she’s lame again. Same foot – off hind – as in December. I did speak to my foot-trimmer but he felt they were a bit too close to calving.

I checked their due dates and if they go 283 days, which is the average, calving will start 28th April. Bronte and Baby are really developing udders now; Rora is too but it’s less pronounced – and she has a really hairy udder, so it’s much harder to see.

udderBronte's udder.

BabyBaby's udder.

Our neighbours are having their hedges cut back – it’s the team of guys who do ours. It’s SO noisy. However, they did bring me a load of woodchip. It’s not the best – being hedge rather than wood – but I’m going to use it on the barn walkway. Aiming to do two barrowloads a day. Also aiming to take two barrows a day of pony poop off the Triangle every day.

Friday 3rd March

Last week, I decided to give the bathroom a bit of a makeover – new towels and accessories. I bought nice blue towels – a dark blue and a bright turquoise to add to the relatively new white ones. All good. I thought we had a blue and white cushion cover in the linen store – the quest for THAT (unsuccessful) lead to the linen store being turned out – and a box for the charity shop established.  But no cushion cover, the linen cupboard is in disarray and I was doing my 2+2 barrows in the twilight.

Saturday 4th March

Well, I got my 2 done but not the +2. Dan went pruning – that’s half the paddocks done, and the most time consuming ones.

Blizz is still lame, so I hosed her foot and leg, to try and take down the swelling. It might make no difference but it’s worth a try.

Sunday 5th March

First day out for the tractor. Dan scooted round and topped all the rushes in the two top paddocks and home. He weather’s forest to break, so it seemed like a good time to get it done. Then he emptied the muck trailer to make my 2+2 easier – today was 2+3 to make up for yesterday.

I managed to get comfrey on the soft fruit, but not much else apart from routine stuff. 



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