Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Cows wander afar.

The farm has been busy the last couple of weeks and I keep letting myself get behind on the blog.  I keep saying I will do better about making timely entries but I am usually so tired when darkness arrives that I just sit in the chair and watch some television.  So this is my written vow to do better!  I seem to stick to things better and have come to realize that this blog is a record of our farm life and a window into our lives.  I go back and review it occasionally and am always impressed by the amount of "learning" I have done over the years.  Since I seem to learn best by my mistakes it takes a lot of mistakes to learn that much.  

The bull has been getting out.  He went down to the wire gate behind Donna's house and pushed through.  Now I had been meaning to tighten the gate as it had started to sag.  The bull beat me to it.  It was a Saturday morning when we noticed he was missing.  Annmarie headed over the upper hill with Zeke following cow tracks.  I jumped into the pickup and started driving around looking for the bull.  I had four separate pleasant conversations with our neighbors but no one had seen the bull.  I picked up  Annmarie and Zeke over the hill at the neighbor's farm.  Still no bull.  We all drove around looking for the bull.  No bull.  Donna called us and said the bull was down in the one neighbor's house who we did not go visit.  By the time we got back, Gannon was pushing the bull up the road into our lower pasture.  He ran right to the creek and waded through the water into the lower pasture by Donna's house.  I had to go lower the panels back over the creek and wire them in place.  The cows don't mind wading through the creek.  The sheep won't get their feet wet, kinda like a cat.  

This necessitated the purchase of lots of fencing supplies including new gates, T-posts, smooth wire, cattle panels and wooden posts.  We went to the PGG spring extravaganza sale and bought in bulk for maximum purchasing power.  The nice thing was the new pickup proved why a V10 is a very nice engine.  It may only get 10 MPG but it does that loaded and unloaded.  It didn't care that the bed was full and the 16ft trailer was full.  



Gannon and I mounted two 16 foot gates in place of the rickety gate and the bull has not gotten out since.  Now he just keeps terrorizing my cow panel in front of the machine shop so he can get to the all you can eat hay buffet.  Yesterday, I had to finally open the gate because he had gotten stuck inside the hay area and could not get out.  He will still come over and take food from our hand but now we have to chase him off occasionally.  He gets upset that there is no treat and starts shaking his head at us waving his horns around.  Annmarie and I have gotten bumped a couple of times.  So we let him come to us and take food from us but if he starts to toss his head around then we chase him off just like we do the horses. He is learning that he has to be polite if he wants to approach us.