Grit Blogs > Spring Peeper Farm

Animal Babies: Spring Has Come to the Country

A photo of Lisa and familyBusy, busy, busy! It never stops. I sometimes just want to sleep and not wake up for a few weeks. That, I think would be bliss. But life goes on and the world is not going to stop to let me off anytime soon.

Well first things first. Happy Easter and our baby is now 9 years old. It seems like just yesterday that he was born. Boy I miss when he was a baby. He’s growing up too fast. Soon he’s going to graduate from high school! Oh well ... such is life.

A photo of Lisa and family, Spring 2010

Most of the farm animals are doing well. Except for our calf, Otis. Otis seems to be losing his fur at an alarming rate. Between his back legs he’s completely bald. It’s coming out in clumps. I’ve never seen such a thing. Mind you, this is only our second bull calf. We’ve asked several cattle farmers around here and they all say the same thing. “It’s normal.” Weird. Oh well. He’s eating well, still a sookie and looking normal otherwise. So we’ll leave it at that. If any of you have seen this before let me know.

We have a few new additions to the farm. We bought a few banty hens (like we didn’t have enough) from a friend. He didn’t want them anymore because he needed the room. Of the hens, 3 are just banties and one is a Millefleur and so is the rooster. That’s why Dave wanted them. They are kind of scraggly, but the feathers will grow back one day.

Banty hens

I’m having a dilemma. I’d love to let my hens run free but we have so many wild mink in the area that I don’t know if they’d survive or not. And also, will they lay in the house or am I going to have to go egg hunting on four acres of land everyday?

The piglets are doing extremely well. They should be ready to hit the road next week or so. We are keeping 2 for ourselves. Dave brought a piglet to the school in Yarmouth last week. A friend of ours teaches third grade, and they were reading Charlotte’s Web. She asked Dave if he could come in with a piglet. I don’t know who was more excited, the kids or our friend? Not one kid had ever seen a pig, and only two had seen hay before. Isn’t that sad. It’s not like we live in New York City. There’s farms everywhere around here.

Charlotte the sow and her piglets

We’ve come to another hard decision. We have to sell Febe. She’s a great milker, great mom and great goat, but she’s really, really bad with kids of the two legged variety. I cannot leave her alone with J. for a minute or she attacks him. This is not good. She’s a very aggressive goat, and I figure that she thinks he’s a small goat she can bully and she attacks him. Last summer she smacked him in the chest and sent him flying. This cannot happen again, and he loves the goats, he wants to help, but he can’t when she’s around, which is all the time since she’s the head goat.

So this winter when she’s dried off, I will put an ad in the paper to sell her. She was due to kid today but she’s late. I think it’ll be a few days still. They can be up to 5 days early or 5 days late.

So since we are going to sell Febe, I need another replacement. So without further ado let me introduce to ya’ll to ....Hazy Day Cindi Lou Who!

J. and our new doeling goat

She came all the way from Sussex, New Brunswick. That’s an 8-hour drive from here. And no, I did not drive that far for her. I have a friend that goes to Bethany Bible College in Sussex. He was coming home for the weekend so he was nice enough to bring her along.

She was born March 25, 2010. She was in the CAE prevention program, so that means I have to bottle feed her. It’s fun, but alot of work. All the milk I had frozen in the freezer for myself is quickly dwindling down for her. Oh well. She is a sweetie.

Well, it’s Easter as I write this. The day our Lord and Saviour arose. We organized a breakfast at the church, and we had an early morning service. I had my parents over for supper and had rappie pie and I’m stuffed!

J looking for Easter eggs

The Easter Bunny passed for J. and left lots of eggs outside for the hunt. The weather was great for it also. It’s been gorgeous for a week now. We are getting June weather in April. On the down side it’s extremely dry at the moment. It’s usually so wet now that we feel moldy. So, if it’s dry now, by August when it’s usually dry it’s going to be worse. That means no fires, no weinie roasting, nada, nothing, zip! We’ll just have to wait and see what the good Lord has in store for us.

Well I have to go and feed “the baby” and check on Febe.

Have a Blessed Day.

4/23/2010 8:46:34 PM

Hi Dave, We tried potatoes a few years back and it wasn't a good crop so we've decided against it this year. Otis is really bald. It's not just winter shedding, it's smooth as a baby's bum bald! But we treated him with Cy-Lence and it seems to be working. Thanks for commenting. Lisa

nebraska dave
4/21/2010 10:03:35 AM

Lisa, although I don’t have animals to keep me busy the backyard project list has been keeping me busy and muscle sore. Spring is always such a wonderful time as the earth is coming out of hibernation and new animal life surrounds us both in the barn and in the wild. It always amazed me that almost any baby animal is cute. Baby pigs are such cute little rascals it just too bad that they have to grow up to be hogs. I understand about the kids now days not knowing where there food comes from other than the grocery store. My grandson, when he was four years old, saw me take a potato out of the fridge to cook in the microwave. He wanted to know what that was. I said that it was a potato. He looked at me a little quizzical and I explained that it was what they make French fries out of. He decided OK that’s a good thing and grabbed one and started to eat it like an apple. I said, “No no, you have to cook them first.” He didn’t quite get it. This year I have planted an 8X10 raised bed of potatoes for him to see where the potatoes come from and then I’ll make the fries so he can see how that’s done. The whole connection with the food source is being eliminated with this generation of kids. Kind of sad. I hope your new goat will be of a much different temperament than Febe. I wouldn’t worry about the hair loss on Otis. Most animals loose their Winter coat in the Spring.

4/19/2010 5:29:22 PM

Lisa, About hunting for eggs. My Delawares have only been running free outside their 'coop run' since March of this year (They were 9 monthes old at the time) and I'm sure they are all laying inside the nestboxes. I do a daily egg count. In addition, we have 3 guinea hens who just started to lay last week. They are also laying in the nestboxes even when given their freedom, they all come "home" to the coop to lay. Concerning the mink....I don't have that problem in Northeast Ohio. Sorry. Although we do have other critters but the guineas make such a racket and charge them when anything approaches, they quickly run off. Cats and dog included. Love those pigs!