Thursday, December 30, 2010

Good Bye 2010

The weather has been more typical. Some nice warm days and some cooler days. We finally got some rain, about .80 and then a few days of light drizzle, probably an inch overall. That will help the grass and trees. Since we finally got some moisture I did put out 50 lbs of rye grass seed on the bluff area where we are still trying to establish some soil over the rock. We have about half covered and well established with grass. The deer and goats love it.

There was no run off of the rain so my berms didn't really get tested. I'm not finished with the big one yet but will be soon. I have decide to move it forward towards the road.

The neighbors deer hunter did shoot a wild pig this week so it is official about them being on top of the mountain. I will keep an eye out for sure. My big buck seems to have made it through hunting season, I saw him yesterday. It will be interesting to see if he rejoins the little group of does that come up to the house most evenings.

The goats are doing fine in the mountain pasture and the kids now follow the herd. The kids are also eating or at least trying the goat feed in addition to the pasture. There is a lot of dry grass and still a bit of good grass so all is well. I expect new grass in 6-8 weeks.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

First Day of Winter

It's hard to believe that it is the first day of winter and the weather has been brilliant the past two days. It reached 84° both days. Great weather but the days are so very short. We need rain, it is very dry.

For about two weeks we've been letting the goats out on the 'house' side since we wanted to do in order to watch the kids closer. This requires me to manually open the gates each day and also keep the gate from the ranch road to the county road closed. We don't really want to do this any longer than we need to, but the goats have been pretty good about staying away from the house. I did have to repair a few holes in the fence along the road. The kids have stayed with the herd the past few days so I have reopened the mountain pasture gates so they are now on their own again.

I took advantage of the weather to build and finish a small berm next to a culvert crossing under the ranch road. We have a draw between Ray's Ridge and the mountain that drains all the water during a rain. This draw comes down the mountain and opens into the lower park area. I've previously diverted the water to go behind the cabin. When we have a big rain with a lot of run off the water needs to slow down so it will drain through one of the two culverts that drain water from the upper to the lower part of the park area. If it doesn't it will flow over the road. Thus the need for a berm so water will slow. I'm very pleased with the way it looks. I had a temporary berm there so I know it will work well. I've started a new long berm below the road where it goes up the mountain. This berm will hopefully divert water and keep road material and gravel from washing into the park area. This one will require a lot of rocks to finish, At least we have plenty of rock.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Wild Hogs

I've had some discussions with the neighbors and it looks like the wild hogs may now be coming up on the mountain. A deer hunter got a photo of some in his wildlife camera on my neighbors place and I now believe that is what got some of my kids. The hogs had been staying in the river and creek beds, but I guess they are now going up hill looking for food. We did have a lot of acorns this year, they may be foraging for them and new territory. I will keep an eye out.

This photo wasn't taken on the ranch, but just north of here near Meridian this past weekend. (I just got this photo and my information is second hand but I believe this is on the Domel place.)

Monday, December 13, 2010

December update

The month started with nice weather, warmer than normal. We didn't get our first 'hard' freeze until this past weekend. The Spanish Oaks have lost most of their leaves by now (probably 60%), but they had very pretty color for a long time. A lot of Texas Live Oaks have also dropped their leaves due to how dry it has been. They do that when necessary, but most are all green.

We don't have a billy with the goats, but we have had a few kids from some late does. Lost a few, but we have three nice ones. We will have a few more in a few weeks. I have the goats in the lower goat lot and have cut a few cedars to clear and then feed to the goats, but still lost 3-4 kids. Not sure what got 2, but 2 were natural.

There were a lot of wild turkeys around at Thanksgiving. Most of the folks that came saw them on the road. Very fitting for Turkey Day.