Mastitis / Beans / Bye, BusterRSS feed

Posted: Monday 25 April, 2022

by Rosemary at 9:29am in Smallholding Comments closed

Monday 18th April

Glorious day – sunny, bit of a breeze. I hung a load of washing out and got it all dried – solar and wind powered dryer. Ploughed through the office jobs though, then got into the greenhouse to pot on most of the tomatoes. And I set the runner and French beans to germinate and planted out the sweet peas.

Dan managed to get away from his desk to get the harrow on the tractor.

Tuesday 19th April

Spot and Notspot barely feed off the bottle at some feeds, so we’ve put them on to three feeds of 300ml each -7am, 3pm and 11pm. If they start clearing up, we’ll increase the amount. They look well.

Dan finished the pig pen fence and the repairs to the meat chick box. They’ll be going out at the weekend. I’ve put the extension run on their box, but they really should be out now.

penThe cheeps' extension.

And the first harrowing was done in Home. Fair bit of thatch came out – the wild birds are collecting it for nest building.

Dan also finished repairs to the electric fence in Sheepfold, so we can get the ponies off the grass. He’ll harrow it in the next few days, then we’ll shut it down and reseed the bare bit.

Wednesday 20th April

What a lovely spell of weather – occasional haar, but really very nice indeed.  After feeding the lambs and ewes this morning, I reunited the flock. Nice to see them all back together. They are supposed to be in Near Top, but the lambs sneak through the fence (it’s not stock netted) into Home to play on the humps and then can’t find their way back, so I’ve opened the gate for now, but they’ll have to go into one or the other soon. In Near Top they have access to the field shelter.

sheepThe flock reunited.

Picked up the pigs at lunchtime – three lovely gilts, and big girls. I decided to line the floor of the puppy cage with paper instead of straw. Mistake. They are it then threw up. Pig sick isn’t nice.

Thursday 21st April

The pigs are settling in fine. One was lame this afternoon, but putting some weight on it, so we’ll see how she is tomorrow. It’s more than likely just a knock.

pigsOur 2022 pigs.

Friday 22nd April

It’s Bertie Cat’s 13th birthday, so he has prawns for tea. They are his favourite thing in the whole world. Diesel, on the other hand, caught his own bunny, which he ate in the hall.

bertieBirthday prawns for Bertie.

Blizzard has mastitis. I noticed the near, back quarter was swollen this morning, so called the vet. She had mastitis in that quarter just after she calved but it had appeared better until today. And, of course, Buster is off to his new home on Sunday.

The pig with the limp is much improved this morning.

The mastitis is quite bad; she will lose the quarter. On the positive side, the infection seems to be entirely limited to that quarter; she is well in herself and there’s no swelling of the lymph nodes. So, Buster is now weaned, so that the vet could use dry cow therapy antibiotics for the quarter, plus long acting antibiotics and a painkiller / anti-inflammatory drug.  Blizzard and Rora are now out in the field; Buster, Bronte and Baby are still in, along with Grey. This will all change on Sunday, but what that change will be, I’m not quite sure yet.

It’s very noisy here.


Saturday 23rd April

It’s still noisy.  Blizzard’s udder has burst but not too badly – but thank goodness the vet warned me or I’d have had a panic attack. 

blizzardBlizzard's sore quarter.

The meat chicks went out into their paddock pen this morning; next job was to clean up the box and pen in the barn. I can’t score a job off the list until it’s properly finished.

cheepsThe meat chicks are out in their pasture pen.

Dan laid some paving in an untidy corner of the garden and he has plans for a brick BBQ in another untidy area. He’s put weed suppressing fabric down next to the pig pen, where he’s going to plant more comfrey and we’re going to put in some trees and shrubs for wildlife.

pathPath upgrade.

I finished potting up the tomatoes – I have 20 Ailsa Craig plants – and finally the Gardener’s Delight seem to be germinating. There are three cucumber plants. We need the hens out of the polytunnel.

tomatoesTwenty Ailsa Craig tomato plants and three cucumber plants.

The runner and dwarf French beans had sprouted so I potted up nine of Scarlet Empire and nine Scarlet Emperor (RB) and about 15 dwarf French beans Rocquencourt. We grew these last year and they were delicious. Still haven’t got the brassicas out though – getting a bit of a mental block about them.

beansSprouted beans.

Tried to get as much preparation done for tomorrow, so we can make a quick start.


Sunday 24h April

Well, that’s Buster off to his new home in Dunbar. He loaded really well and travelled without incident; at the other end, he followed his bucket into his pen and ate the soaked beet. He has a herd of four – two older cows and two unbred heifers, two dams and daughters. The heifers are over two – I aim to calve mine for the first time at two – and they’re all in very good condition. Still, I’m sure he’ll do his very best to get them in calf.

blackberrycowsBuster's Blackberry Herd.

It’s a bit quieter now; Blizzard has stopped bawling and, now that all four females are out (but with access to the barn) the only one occasionally bawling is Grey. Poor boy.

I was tired when we got home, so I took myself off to the office and did tomorrow’s jobs today – planning to do today’s jobs tomorrow. And just because, our pots of wallflower and tulips.

potsTulips and wallflower.

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