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Water Through a Fence

26 Mar

There’s an old saying that if you throw a bucketful of water at a fence and any gets through, it won’t hold a goat.  Well, there might be a lot of truth to that.

Litha walking through a fence several years ago.

When I bought my farm ten years ago, the first thing I had to do was fix fence around the Back Forty.  And I did replace fence on three sides.

Right after we put the fence in.

That left one section (on two sides) that did not get replaced, but I did my best hobbling job, and it actually worked really well until last summer.  Last summer I think I had to open the panel by the lane to let goats in every day.  Seriously.  It was quite a pain.

leaning and hobbled, but still working when this image was taken a few years ago

It started again this spring as soon as they went out to pasture, so I followed them to see where they were getting through.  That little spot is where they were sneaking under.

Penelope and Hera were my two main offenders.

Hera and Penelope

I added a little section of panel and figured that should do the trick.

Penelope checking it out.

Penelope tried going through before I even had it secured.  Luckily, she can get her head back out from the panel.

When I got done tying it tight (with Moose supervision),

Moose

I stood up and turned around to see…

Dang Penelope!  I couldn’t do anything until she came back through, so I decided to just hang with the rest of the herd for a little bit when I turned to see…

Hera

She’s almost five months pregnant (which is why I didn’t grab a leg and wrestle her back out).

Hera with Caroline on the right side of the fence

Don’t worry; she got back through, and I did some more hobbling.  I’m sure that will take care of the problem until the next time they go out to pasture.  My hope is that this last stretch will get replaced this summer.

Stop Doing Stupid Stuff

27 Jul

Hera.  This girl is going to kill me.  All through our horrible heat, I was walking out to pasture and making sure she wasn’t stuck in a fence.  She’s done well with it.  Really.  She’s even back to where I could pet her.  She’s been really…sweet.

Of course, I’m sweet.

That should have been my first clue.  I went out one morning to milk and was greeted by Hera yelling.  I’m not sure how, but she had her head stuck in the fence between the yard and barnyard. It’s just a panel, but there’s also more fencing to prevent the kids from coming through.  Apparantly, my fence had a hole, and she got her head through but couldn’t get it back out.  I got some wire cutters and freed her.  Then I told her to stop doing stupid stuff.

Haley in front of the offending fence (look at the tiny holes)

After milking, I was going to go see if I could pet Socks, and I walked into the barn and was greeted with a goat yelling at me.  I got to the second section, and there was Hera.  How?  She somehow got her head and a leg behind the post in the center of the manger, and she couldn’t move forewards or backwards.  I went into the middle part of the barn and opened the door.  She just stood there for a minute, not realizing I had freed her, so I moved her head and she bounded away with me calling behind her, “Stop doing stupid stuff.”

That’s twice I had rescued her before 7:30 am.  Things went back to normal, and the next day she was up with the rest of the herd in the evening.  I left them and when I went out about a half an hour later to give Harley and Betty their meds, I heard someone yelling at me. Yep.  She had gone back down the lane and stuck her head through.  She was stuck again.

Not even a thank you as she walked away.  Once again, I told her to stop doing stupid stuff.

You can’t make this stuff up. The next day when I was out in pasture counting all the little June kids, I looked up and saw…Poki.

Poki with Cutie and Zinnia wondering how to get over there

She is not supposed to be on the other side of the fence eating rich alfalfa.  Of course, I don’t blame Poki.  Look who she followed over there.  That would explain the diarrhea she had the other day…

Doesn’t she look smug standing in front of the little place where they push the fence up and slip under?

Not five minutes later, she was lying where she belonged looking sweet and letting me pet her again.

She really needs to stop doing stupid stuff.

Moving and Birthing

18 Jun

I decided I had to move my moms from the two buildings where they were penned to the north paddock.

Daisy and Dahlia

Unfortunately, I still have a lot of my March babies up there.

Bubbles, Sacagewea, Moira, Squanto, Angela, John and Tootles

That means it’s kind of crowded and going to get eaten down, and I don’t have enough shelter if we get bad storms. I’d have to go out and move someone.  I’m thinking aobut letting Bubbles and a couple of other kids back with the big herd, but I don’t want to put kids out there to reunite with their moms to be sold in just a couple of weeks.  We’ll see how it goes.

Bubbles (these kids never stand still)

It wasn’t too bad to get everyone moved up there.

Bambi and Lucky

I also spent a big part of the day putting chicken wire on the panels between the yard and barnyard. Pepe was a good little helper.  He was nibbling my ear and being pretty sweet.

Pepe

The chicken wire was necessary though because the little babies just zip through the cattle panels like nothing, and Sky would treat them like they were a funny-colored short-tailed squirrel.  That would  not be good.

Sky

I really had to get them moved because I did not have room for poor LilyAnn.  I had to shut her in because she had her kid!

LilyAnn and her baby

She had one big boy.

Ringo

I think his name is Ringo (because of the little ring of white around his one front ankle.

Vinnie

Now we’re just waiting on Vinnie.  Come on, Vinnie!  I want to sleep!