I had been watching the Asian pear tree fruit ripen.  The fruit was excellent last year and I had been looking forward to it this year.  Yesterday, when I went out to move the sprinkler I noticed the tree was covered in yellow jackets. The fruit was being eaten down to the core while hanging on the tree.  I did not want to share with the stinging predators so I stripped the entire tree.  The fruit is a little green but it is still pretty sweet.   I put a bunch of the fruit in the kitchen window to turn yellow.  Next year I am going to have to do something about the insects.  I will set out traps for the yellow jackets.  Our plum tree has some horrible leaf curl and all the fruit fell off, I would like some plums next year.  

When we were on vacation I brought home some new plants!  I got all the cactus starts planted and I hope they take. This plant is very cool, when it gets large it sheds little pieces of itself like worms coming out of the ground.  I will be happy with even a single plant.  I spent Monday morning repotting lots of plants.  I trimmed all my house plants and in general played on the breeze porch.  I even just sat in the rocking chair and listened to my book on tape for about an hour.  After lunch I spent about two hours working on the dog tag stamping machine.  I think I am going to have to move it from the breeze porch into our bedroom.  I have some new surface rust on it and I believe the water evaporating from the plants is increasing the humidity.  I am going to make a plastic cover for it and put some desiccant under it so it is as dry as possible.  I just need to get the sewing machine moved downstairs into the craft room then I can fit the dog tag machine in the corner of our bedroom.  What do you have in your bedroom?  I have a manly dog tag machine, 300# of cast iron steel, designed to cause permanent letters into a metal disc!  Doesn’t get much more manly than that, it will go well with the handmade quilt and cross stitch sampler on the wall. 

Yesterday evening Annmarie hollered at dinner time that the alpaca were picking on one of the other alpaca.  This is a daily problem, but she insisted it was way worse than normal.  I told her to let the border collies out of the yard to break up the fight.  The alpaca did not want to give up on the fight and just chased the dogs away.  We had to go out and the alpaca still did not want to give up the fight.  Annmarie had to literally chase the bullies away and keep after it as they kept coming back to get in more licks on the injured alpaca.  The weird part about this is we had them kill a black alpaca two years ago.  The three white alpaca kept after it until they finally killed it.  This time the victim was a white alpaca  When we went out there were four alpaca on top of it pinning it to the ground.  Once we got everyone off of it we determined it was still alive.  We tried to help it stand but it would not move and could hardly lift its head.  I ended up dragging it about 40 feet by its back legs until we got into the barn lot and through a gate.  It was moving a little more after the drag but still not very active.  Annmarie brought a bucket of water and set it right next to the injured animal.  I was hopeful that it would just rest up and be okay.  We had already decided to move it in with the sheep herd so it would have non alpaca companions.  This morning when I went to work it was standing up and was in the corral looking around, when I came home this evening it was dead.  I suspect it was a lactic acid buildup and just too much depression.  It lost the will to live.  So I had to load it up into the tractor bucket and take it up to the boneyard. This is why we have a boneyard.  Annmarie is not happy with the alpaca.  This is why people should castrate their alpaca prior to six months old.  Everyone thinks their boys will be fabulous studs but that is just not the case in most instances.  You end up with herds of testosterone laden males just itching for a fight.  

Here are the guilty parties who killed our alpaca.  They would not leave the gate were we separated off the injured party.  They were still there in the morning watching him through the gate and fencing.  Don’t be fooled by the cute faces, they are bullies and killers.