Sunday, June 28, 2015

Winter Mornings

On winter mornings I put on overalls and a woolly hat and set off for the dairy, armed with a bucket of hot water and the milk pail. Using the water to wash Hailey's teats keeps my hands warm and squeezing warm milk out of a warm udder is quite pleasant. Once the milking is done it is time to feed the other animals.

Tonto the bull follows me to his day paddock. He gets to spend his evenings and nights with Hailey but after breakfast he is on his own for the day. He has been with us about six weeks now and unless he is a very quick mover there has been no sign of real interest from either cow or bull.

 Curly and the dairy kids Penny and Misty get some sheep nuts and a biscuit of Lucerne to supplement the diminishing grass in their paddock.
Each of the chook flocks gets a scoop of layer mix - we use Darling Downs - and then they spend the rest of the day scratching around for bugs and whatever else they find, which we hope is all the worms from the goats. 

Comet the calf is let in with her mum but she prefers hay to milk these days but will soon latch on once Hailey wanders up from the dairy.

 Cedric and the five does share hay and sometimes nuts in a wooden trough that lets them all have a space.

Archie and Toby wolf down their meatloaf and biscuits so fast it was hard to catch a photo of them still eating.
The guinea pigs - all 9 of them - need their cages moving and some lettuce leaves donated by the local café.

After this morning routine I can head back inside for my own breakfast.

If I have to go to work or head to our other property for the day these tasks may have to be done between 6.30am and 7.00am which can be a bit dark and cold but on other days I can leave it another hour or so when hopefully the frost has melted and the sun come out!  Despite the cold it is very grounding to greet the dawn with the animals and I find I don't mind it at all. The woolly hat really helps though!

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