Saturday, January 31, 2009

Two more

These are the two kids that were born just before feeding time yesterday so they are less than 24 hours old in this photo. I haven't checked the sex yet. They looked so content, I thought I'd leave them alone. They look very good. Doe is Winnie and she is a good mother.

My guess is Little Red will be next with new kids later today or very soon.

Beautiful day today almost 70° at noon.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Kidding Time

Kidding has begun. I went to feed today and there was a missing goat. Went to look and she (Winnie) had just given birth to her second kid. Everything looked fine so I left her alone with the kids. As I was walking to her though I noticed a baby kid and walking away I noticed a second. I suspect these are Zulu's and were born two days ago. They were clean and content. I thought Zulu looked like she had dropped, but she was so bagged up that I didn't get a good look. I'll check them in the morning to confirm. Zulu is the most experienced goat I have and all the goats I have and almost all of the goats I have ever had are through her from years past. She is an excellent goat. That's her photo at the top of the blog and the reason it's there. She has paid for my share of the road assessment. I've been doubling the feed since we have little good grass now. I'll cut some cedar and get some hay supplement now that they are birthing. Hopefully they will all kid in the next few days. I'll get some more photos this weekend. An early spring would be wonderful. Update: photo: Zulu's kids, ~48 hrs, two females

Kenzie caught a mouse running out of the pavilion today. The mouse was in the bird seed and got trapped and made an unsuccessful dash for it. That made for a lot of excitement for the two dogs.

We had had an ice storm this past week. I haven't really looked for damaged tree limbs yet. My battery on the truck was weak and the cold finally did it in. Unfortunately I had just taken the wheel off the tractor the day before so I could not use the tractor to start the truck. Actually the Gator had enough juice for the job. Very lucky. The trip to town this week included tire repair and battery replacement to the usual errands. Today I got the wheel back on the tractor.

Life in the country--gotta love it.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

January Update

Link to the most recent photos from the Stealth Cam:

Deer, crows, dove in flight, rabbit, raccoons, a little bit of everything in a few nights. I've seen more than four deer at one time in back of the house, but that's probably the most I have captured in one camera shot.

I saw a pair of Blue Jays yesterday so hopefully they will nest nearby. I was glad to see them. I have added them to the "Birds Observed on Ranch"

Something ate the 10/15 onion starts I put out behind the Pavilion. Probably rabbits or jacks. The garlic I planted there is untouched. At least the onions I planted next to the house are OK. Those may be mint flavored onions when they come up.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

January Update

We have been away for a week on a little holiday and all seems well on the ranch. Thanks to the neighbors that feed the animals and watch the place we can get away every once in a while. I'm sure the deer and birds are glad we are back as I have filled all the feeders for them. I did see a Blue Jay this week. They are very common in the city, but I have never been able to confirm seeing one on the ranch before this week. When I first came here I thought that it was very odd that Blue Jays would not be found in the country. I'm not sure why. Another common bird you see more in the city than in the country is our state bird, the mockingbird. I see a few mockingbirds but not many. I also saw a robin this week. Maybe the bug eaters are hanging together.

About six of the goats look like they will be kidding within the next month. I knew they were with kid for quite a while but not having seen them for a week makes it more noticeable, especially the ones I was unsure about.

I moved the stealth cam from the feeder to the water tank since I knew I would not be here to fill the feeders. Nothing really exciting seen. I did move it back to the feeder upon return and had a lot of activity. I'll upload the photos of the past few nights. Look for a link on an update.

Weather was cool before leaving, but the past few day have been very nice. It always changes though. Yesterday it was 86°, but this morning it was below freezing, a drop of 56° in twelve hours.

Fair Access Policy: It's not easy out in the country to get good internet access. We are beyond cable, DSL, and other common ISP's. Most who have internet in the country have to use satellite. I use When you see someone with a email address your almost assured that they live in the boonies. One of the problems with using satellite is that you are sharing the air waves with all kinds of people, businesses, military, devices, etc. so they have a policy called the Fair Access Policy which limits your internet use by volume. I have learned to upload or download large files in the middle of the night so that I will not go over the allotted limit. That is why I'll have to wait to upload the wildlife photos. Just another thing we deal with living in the country.

Monday, January 05, 2009


We've had some very nice weather. Several record highs were set in many areas. We had two days that it was 82°-84° here at the ranch. Beautiful days. Today the cooler weather has returned, but at least we are getting some moisture. It's very close to freezing but so it has been a mix of rain and ice. It is needed very much. After those very warm days I though we may have to water the shrubs around the house or they would completely dry out. I tried to get a photo of the ice in the Spanish Oak just below the ridge. (photo on right-double click on it to enlarge) It looks pretty in the view and gives us a different look. It is amazing how the same view will change with the weather, leaf growth, how the sun hits the mountains and trees.

Still using the stealth cam. All the photos are of deer, raccoons, squirrels, and crows. I'm going to only start save the unique ones. Here's a link to photos of about a 24-hour period. This was New years day and night.

The county wide burn ban is still on, but maybe we'll get enough rain that they will take it off for a while. We've had about .66 today although it is really very dry overall. The tank is dry and the live oaks have dropped some leaves early.

Unusual Observation: As it was New Years I of course made a big pot of Black Eyed Peas. I had soaked a lot of peas and only used about half. I took the remaining peas down to the goats at feeding time as I thought they would love them. NO didn't care for them and goats eat about everything, and Annie wouldn't eat them either . Since I had them in the bucket they got mixed with the deer corn. The deer didn't seem to care for them as the feeder wasn't empty as usual. I finally scooped them out and scattered them on the ground. Something eventually ate them. What is it with the peas that the animals didn't like? Especially the goats. I didn't find any specific information about black eyed peas as feed so I wonder if anyone knows why?