Bull corral eventually

This is gonna be dinner in just a few months. He just doesn’t know it yet. There are 3-6 bucks living on the place now and they make a circuit every day. My nephew and I both drew buck tags this year. We have been scoping out the deer. They won’t be huge animals but they will be good eating.

The wheat is harvested now and it came in at 42 bushels to the acre. This is the best it has been since we got back. It looked amazing. The largest problem we were told was that the deer had made huge trails and snacking points throughout the entire field.

I had to drop off the raccoon carcass on the boneyard so I snagged the old tractor rim that was buried up there. I am going to turn it into a fire pit in the ram pasture. I may even try and figure out how to build a spit for it.

Between a few hours here and there I have managed to get the bull corral operational. I still need to put up four rails in one spot over the woven fence and I need to figure out a latch for the gate that cannot be undone. We got all the scrap wood and scrap metal out of the enclosure and created a flat spot for the water trough. The trough will hold 265 gallons of water. Annmarie drug a hose out there from our house, about 250 feet and it took an hour to fill it. The horses are now living in it and we are feeding them twice daily. They were getting very fat and needed to come off the all you can eat buffet that was the upper prime field. They do not appreciate the genius and ingenuity it took to make the corral.

I need to drag out the lamb shed with the tractor. It is ankle deep in horse and sheep poop. I have some old windows in there from when my parents changed out their windows ten years ago. I am going to build a platform on the end of the barn so the large window can be installed. I am going to build 2×8 foot platforms like a set of steps twelve feet off the ground. So five separate steps covered with 1/2 inch plywood sheets. I am going to use the leftover tamarack railing. Once that is in place then I can climb up and install the window casings and we will be ready to man handle the window into place. I will probably get rid of the other windows. I have used a couple of them in various locations. I may look at the old chicken coop before I toss them. I may be able to glass in the open portion of the chicken coop.

We have decided to not expand the barn. We have only had one person call about our Craigslist ad. They only wanted to buy ten sheep not 40. So I wrote their information down just in case. I am now going to advertise in the surrounding area Craigslist towns. See if I cannot garner some more attention. If that doesn’t work then we are going to look at the small animal sale in La Grande. I am just unsure about the auction as you just never know what the final price will be. I certainly don’t want them sold for $30 an animal.

I have four left over panels that were not used in the corral. They will cover 32 feet. I think I need to bridge almost 55 feet to create another wall. So I am actually going to have to break out a tape measure and some spray paint and lay out another fence. This will make getting any animal into the sorting corral very easy.

Love me some alpaca

It has officially begun, wheat harvest at the farm is underway, it started on Saturday. If you notice, they brought a tractor out and disced a harvested area by the access gate. This is so they can use the area as a staging point for all the equipment. This way an accidental fire is not started when they park for the night.

Bubba came out to do another day on Saturday. I was under the weather and slept most of the day but did manage to drag myself off of the couch and go out and give him clear directions on what needed to be done. He still has a little bit left in the the barn, about 2 hours and another 2 hours on the chicken coop.

His mother sent me a picture of the bucks in the lower field on their way off the farm. I messaged her yesterday to see if Bubba was coming out on Monday so he could help me with the bull corral. I wanted to make a big push to get it done. She informed me that Bubba was busy but she was under the impression he was done until I was ready for him to disc the upper field again. I need to get a new disc this week. I told her Bubba had a lesson here, he was not done with the barn or chicken coop. He could finish them and then disc when I was ready or he could get paid and be done, his choice. Bubba made it sound as if he was done. I am told he will be out tomorrow to finish the chicken coop and barn. Digging shit is not fun or glamorous but it does pay the bills.

Sarah had a school project due and she wanted to do a video on how to trim the alpaca’s feet. Since my mother in law has said they need it I had added it to the infamous “list”. This plan actually had an added benefit of helping both Sarah and us at the same time. We herded the alpaca into the corral with minimal effort and no dog help. We kept the dogs in the front yard as they are more of a problem than a solution when it comes to the alpaca. I knew she needed a video so I had on an old blue T-shirt with a clown face on the front in yellow and the sleeves cut off. It was perfect video actor attire! Annmarie made me cover it up! I was looking forward to seeing it on the how to video. We have 10 alpaca and last year we cut everyone’s feet I thought but there were a couple of bad alpaca feet. I am not sure about it now but next year will be the key as we got all 10 this year. I only made one toe bleed bad enough to use styptic powder on it. The alpaca do not like you making them bleed. We would catch them, trim their toes then push them into an adjoining pen. The problem with this is I keep telling everyone they don’t spit on humans. Now there have a been a few instances were people have gotten spit in the face but its not a normal thing. The black one spit in my face when I went to open the gate to let a newly trimmed alpaca into the completed pen. It didn’t seem like an accident and it didn’t seem like he was aiming at his buddy. Annmarie and Sarah say he was aiming at me. Its not very fun and it smells like regurgitated grass and bile which it is.

They take passive aggressive to a whole new level. They just stop moving and then lift all four legs off the ground. If you are not ready they end up laying on the ground with their feet under them and won’t move. This makes it very hard to trim feet. I would just reach under them and fish one foot at a time out. We tried to make Sarah catch them as they like women better than men. My mother in law feeds them apples every day by hand. Me they only see when something bad is happening.

After the alpaca were completed I went and trimmed two trees and two bushes in the yard. I like the shade trees to be open enough to have a great round shape but still allow the wind to blow through. The bushes were hanging too low. I put all the branches out in the orchard for the sheep to eat. They will strip off all the leaves and then I can cut them up and pile them in a burn pile to torch this winter.

Annmarie spotted the twins on her way home Sunday. I have seen them all over the farm at one point or another.

We were headed to bed tonight and spotted a huge beetle on our front porch. Annmarie did not like its look or size. Its about 2.5 inches long and 1.5 inches wide. Its pretty big for around here. While she was looking at it and holding the front door open I saw something large fly past the porch light and into the open front door. I looked inside the house but could not find anything. I am in the kitchen doing the blog and Annmarie has gone to bed. I just heard a howl and holler for me five minutes ago. My wife was hiding on the bed pointing at another beetle in our bedroom. It was on its back and she wanted me to get it out. I am not that comfortable just picking it up so wanted a piece of paper. As I searched the room for something to use she gave me blow by blow commentary on how it was turning itself over and was now on its four legs and getting away! I got it to step up on same paper and gave it a Viking funeral in the toilet. It seemed safer than tossing it outside with its buddy to procreate.