So, despite being really busy over the last week or so, I’ve found it really hard to know exactly what to write about on the blog. I’ve been busy doing lots of little things here and there, none of which I felt really warranted a blog post of its own, so this one is going to be a little recap on how I’ve spent the last 8 days!

As you might have guessed, a lot of my time has been taken up by sheep. Our sheep have settled in quite nicely, they have their own little routine and are now up and waiting for me to bring the cake in the morning which is always a nice way to kick off the day. They’ve even ventured nearer the house, so it’s pretty exciting to look out of the kitchen window to see my own livestock!

I introduced an extra trough for the ewes, mainly to stop them overcrowding to get at their cake. For the first few days they would just eat from one trough at a time but they eventually got the hang of things.

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I also got the opportunity to help out the local sheep farmer that outwinters his sheep in some of our fields. The sheep numbers have been dwindling as more and more reach condition and head off to the abbatoir, so I was on hand to help bring in the remaining sheep with the owner and his sheepdogs. Over 50 were drafted to go for slaughter and left the farm on Saturday, while a further 16 drafted for sale at Longtown mart.

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Thursday was spent in control of a skidsteer, clearing out sheds ahead of calving. We hired a Bobcat S100 skidsteer from a local company for the day, I’m not a big ‘machine head’ but I do really enjoy operating a skidsteer. This is the second skidsteer we’ve hired, last time we had a larger New Holland but I found the Bobcat a lot easier and more enjoyable to use. The only negative aspect of the Bobcat was the lack of a door (the New Holland had one) as it was absolutely freezing that day and on occasion I would get plastered with any poo that fell out of the bucket as I was loading up the trailer.

A few calves have started arriving, one of which is refusing to get along with its mother, so Iona and I have been given the responsibility of feeding it. We’ve managed to get it to suckle occasionally from the mother, but primarily we’re just filling it up with plenty of warm milk 2-3 times a day.

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She’s a lovely wee heifer and it is nice to be able to get up close with her.

The weekend was relatively quiet, so most of it was spent doing some planning for the year ahead. I know we’re already one month in but it seemed like a good time to do it!

This week has gotten off to a busy start, so I’ll have plenty to fill you in on later in the week!

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