Tag Archives: opossum

Taunting Him

19 Feb

When I was coming in from finishing chores (shutting in the birds while taking my camera with me), Sky was all wired.  When I got to the gate, he wasn’t paying attention to me.  Instead he was staring.

Sky (Snickers on the rail and Noelle’s glowing eyes in the window)

I looked, but I didn’t see anything.

Then I looked closer.  The opossum was waiting to see if I was going to drop more corn below the bulk bin.

Do you know how hard it is to get a year old German shepherd to ignore the opossum under the bin.

Sky knew he was out there.

Friday’s Hunt v3.2

13 Jan

Welcome back to Friday’s Hunt.  I want to thank everyone who joined in last week.  I had a lot of fun visiting everyone who linked up.  It’s very simple.  Anyone can participate.  The link opens at 7pm Central time and will close Sunday at 7pm, so you have plenty of time to enter.  Hopefully, you’ll be inspired to visit some of the other entries.

If you didn’t participate this week but would like to next week the topics will be:  Starts with C, Week’s Favorite, and odd angle.   I will always keep a list of the items for the coming week in my sidebar at the top.  I am crazy busy with teaching and working on the farm right now, but I will make sure to visit all participants.  Without further ado, here’s my interpretations for the week.

Starts with B:  I’ve had quite a few goats whose names began with B:  Bam Bam, Bambi, Bandit, Barbie, Barnaby, Barney, Barney, Baxter, BB, Beau, BeBop, Bekka, Belle, Ben, Benny, Bert, Bert, Beryl, Betty Lou, Billy, Blaze, Bling, Blondie, Blossom, Blyssin, Bo, Bode, Boeris, Bonnie, Boris, Brindle, Brownie, Brutus, Buck, Buck, Bud, Buffy, Bullseye, Bullwinkle, Bunny, Buster, and Butterscotch.  While I still have the goats in bold, I’m sharing Brindle and Bode today.  This is the image I’ve chosen for the 2017 tail count (which will be updated in my side bar as we have kids).

Brindle and Bode

Brindle and Bode

Week’s Favorite:  I’ve still been working on my artsy stuff with books.  Here are a couple that I’ve finished.

faith-hope-love_9160ews

book-art_9173ews

Creature:  I have a lot of creatures on my farm, but when I heard my peacocks yell a warning call and went into the chicken coop the other night, I saw a creature I did not want to see in there.  Can you see it?

chickens-in-coop_9163ews

Here’s a closer look.  I was not happy, and it was removed.  I’ve lost too many birds lately due to weather and neighbor cats to lose any more.

opossum_9164ews

At work today, I also got to meet this creature!  Isn’t she beautiful?

tarantula

Now it’s your turn!

Surprises: Sweet and Sad

27 Mar

I shared that Bambi had her babies.  Well, we’ve had three more girls kid in a twenty-four hour period.

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The vet looked at Pam and agreed she was miserable and very pregnant and needed to give birth.  Shortly after the vet left, I realized Litha was getting ready to have kids, so I brought her over to the greenhouse and started making a third pen.  It really was getting crowded in there.  I had to leave for a couple of minutes, and when I returned, she already had a baby with her.  I watched, and it didn’t take too long before she was pushing again.  There were two bags, and that doesn’t work.  You can only give birth to one baby at a time, so I tried to feel and reposition.  In doing this, the bags broke and I suddenly found three feet and only one head.  I can’t pull them when I don’t know what part goes with whom.  I let her push a few more times and hoped she’d move one back now that I had repositioned them a bit, but she wasn’t making progress.  I think the horrors of last year were still weighing on me, and I called the vet.  They sent him back, and I kept going between Litha and the gate.  She was still pushing, but I couldn’t see anything.  Finally, the vet arrived, and we walked in to find her brand new baby on the floor.  Really.  He did pull the third one, and all was good.  I’m only a little surprised that Litha had triplets.  They are nice sized and all are doing well.

That evening, Pam was finally in active labor.  She pushed and the bag appeared.  I looked and saw a tail.  That’s not good.  I have had girls deliver babies tail first, but it’s not easy, and the baby has to be pretty small.  I tried helping, but there is no way that big baby was going to come out butt first.  That means I had to push the baby back in far enough to find the legs and pull them out first.  This was painful for Pam and it means the baby’s face was being pushed into all that liquid.  It didn’t take long to get the feet out, and then it was a really easy pull.  Unfortunately, I couldn’t get the baby to breathe.  I worked and worked, but she was too weak.  Then I saw Pam was trying to have another baby.  With the poor positioning of the first one, I decided to see how this one was coming.  When I felt in, I could feel both babies, but they were way low.  I found feet and tail.  I quickly pulled the second one, and it was a bit scary too, but he finally coughed and sputtered, and we kept working to get the fluids out.  Finally, I pulled the third one, and she was actually front feet first the way they are supposed to come.  Both babies were very weak.  I think with Pam’s not feeling well, she probably should have started pushing much sooner.  It left her babies weak and unable to even stand up.  We finally brought the kids inside and gave them bottles from the freezer.

I laid down about midnight with the kids on the floor beside me.  They woke me up and I gave them bottles at 1:30.  Then I ran out to check the other pregnant girls.  I slept (kind of) again until about 3:00 when they wanted fed again.  After bottles, I ran out to check the others, and I heard a baby cry.  I ran back in and got towels from the dryer where I had done laundry earlier in the day and a blow dryer and rushed to the north pen where Blaze had a baby with her.  It was small, too small, and mostly dried off, but I wanted to get it under the heat lamp since it was a cold night.  I scooped him up and was very surprised when I saw that there was already someone enjoying the fresh straw bedding and warmth of the lamp–an opossum.  He really didn’t want to give up his warm spot.  I put the baby back by his mom and ran to the middle part of the barn and grabbed the potato fork.  I rushed back and gently tried to encourage Mr. Opossum to kindly leave my warm barn and go back to the wilds where he belonged.  He hissed and bared his teeth.  I encouraged him a bit more emphatically, so he finally began walking.  I kept encouraging him along the wall and towards the door.  We were getting close when all of a sudden Blaze blazed past me and attacked the opossum with the ferocity of a new mom.  I started grabbing at Blaze to pull her off the opossum before she got bit because rabies shots for the goat was the last thing I wanted to think about at that time.  After a couple of tries, I got her pulled back enough that the opossum finally decided it might be a good idea to leave and much more quickly than my prodding him along.  Blaze kept snorting and was all hopped up on adrenaline and pregnancy hormones, so she was really pushy with me when I took her baby over and put him under the lamp.  It did still smell an awful lot like opossum there, but it was safe, so I ran around and put a cord through the window between the lean to and the chicken building and hurried back to them.  Then I plugged in the blow dryer.  Now, Blaze was still reeling from the memory of the opossum and now there was this little noisy thing coming towards her baby.  She attacked again–the blow dryer.  Then me.  After all, I was the one with the opossum and now I was holding this new threat.  I kept telling her she really needed to focus on giving birth again, but she was not about to do any such thing when there was a threat against her baby.  After a few minutes, the kid was warm, so I put him back under the light and Blaze finally calmed down enough to have baby number two.  This one was also small, so I figured we were going to have a third.  I brought the second one over to the light and helped Blaze dry him off.  She was a little better with me and the towel touching her kid, but I still was getting snorted at and had to dodge a couple of quick jabs with her horns.  Then I noticed feet stuck out her back side.  I reached in to make sure the head was properly positioned, but I found tail.  I really was dreading it, but I pulled the baby out, and he immediately sputtered and coughed and did well.  I helped with drying this one, but it was late.  I really wanted to sleep.  I went back to the blow dryer and had to fight Blaze off while I dried her kids some more.

There’s no way I was going to be able to help them nurse the way she was acting.  Nobody looked cold.  They were all under the heat lamp, and I’d had it.  I went back to the house and was amazed to see that it had only been one hour since I had gone out to check the girls. I went to the living room and was greeted by Pam’s little girl standing.  That was good, but she’d also left me a wet spot on the carpet since she had walked off the pad I had them on.  I cleaned it up and rested (it really isn’t sleep).  I went back out at five to make sure they had nursed and nobody was cold.  Luckily all were well and I could rest again until six when it was time for more bottles.

Pam is still not doing well.  She has not passed the placenta and is just tired and in pain.  She’s had vitamins and wormer and is on antibiotics, but I’m still horribly concerned about her.  I’m afraid she’s got a uterine infection that has gone septic.  The vet is coming to check her out.  Everyone else is doing quite well.

EDITED:  I wanted to let you know that the vet took Pam to the office to give her an iv, but she died while they were trying to put it in.  Thanks everyone for your kind words and support these last couple of days.

Linking to Rurality Blog Hop, Alphabe-Thursday where the letter of the week is S, and Thursday Favorite Things.