Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Papa

This is our new bull, Papa. We're hoping he and Raisa become very good friends and produce a nice little heifer for us next year.

Two days before Papa arrived we separated Windsor and Raisa.  This has been very stressful for them and even a little bit for me.  I think their bawling and pacing upsets the other animals too.  Maybe not the pigs.  The first day Raisa wouldn't leave the fence for long so I wasn't able to milk her.  Today I got about 2 gallons.  She had more to give but decided she was done and, while I like to think I'm boss, Raisa makes it very clear she's boss when she's had enough. I think the reason she came to be milked was because she was afraid I'd give the food to the new guy.  Maybe she's a little more relaxed today because Windsor was off grazing.

Papa is probably 100 lbs lighter than Windsor.  He makes Windsor look roly poly.  Boy, can Papa run though.  He and Keri have been trying to establish who's boss.  I'm not sure if it's been settled yet. When Raisa first saw him she charged him with her back arched, screaming.   Keri thought it was her job to protect Raisa for once.

When I was trying to get some pictures of Papa Keri was nervous about me getting close.  So was I just a little.  I saw him charge Keri so I thought it best to give him space.  I made her stay away so I could move toward him without him feeling threatened by her.  She moved herself between him and the goats and kept watch to see if I needed protecting.
It's hard to photograph a black animal and capture his face with an Iphone.  I always have to edit to remove shadows but it's still hard to see more than his silhouette.
He's still very nervous today and seems to be watching the other animals interact.  He's unsure of and curious about the pigs and donkeys on the other side of the fence.  He lived with cattle only at his last farm so it's going to take him some time to get used to the way pigs and goats walk under donkeys and cows, share food and live very comfortably together.
 Here are a few more photos from this week.  Baxter likes to go to the field to explore and Keri likes having a canine playmate.  The goats used to be afraid of Baxter but now they're just bewildered by the quirky bundle of energy.
I was gathering rocks out of the yard and throwing them in the loader of the tractor and moving them to the creek.  Willy wouldn't stay out of Betty's bucket which proved to be dangerous when I accidentally hit her in the head with a rock.  She's fine, but she learned to stay out of the way after that.


3 comments:

  1. So far so good! Glad you got some milk!

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  2. What a nice family. Is Papa a new addition or a seasonal visitor?

    ReplyDelete