Daily Update 1/2/17

11:45 am

Well the day hasn’t started off all roses and sunshine today. To be honest, it’s been down right frustrating. Since I’m still dealing with the remnants of a nasty cold from a few months ago, this colder weather is kicking my butt.

Of course, staying up late and laughing over messages with a friend probably didn’t help but sometimes we just need to dream and make fun of ourselves in the process. After the fiasco of dealing with idiots scheduling transport of new animals to the farm after midnight and clueless animal caretakers, I need a hearty laughter session.

It did all make me late for doing chores this morning, by nearly two and a half hours. It’s not that anyone would actually starve but animals are extremely OCD and like a rigorous schedule. Ever seen those “hangry” commercials by snickers? Well, just envision a rowdy 500 pound sow and 10 growing piglets! They wanted slop and they wanted it two hours ago.

While feeding the pigs, one of my other sows pushed right up against the fencing and walked right thru while I dividing up feed. Since she should have been zapped with a least a little jolt, I knew something was completely wrong. I got her back in, fed and went in search of the issue.

Noticing the cows out to pasture, all lined up on the horizon watching me walk the fence line, I knew something had happened. Upon investigation, I discovered an area of 5 strand high tensile wire all wadded up. The top strand broken loose and two steel posts bent way over. 

Looking at the tracks, it looks like a nosy fox started a stampede and the cattle just charged thru the fence. So here I am, out in the cold and biting wind, repairing a fence. Thank goodness I’m also prepared with a post pounder, extra post clips and a crimping tool. Other wise, I’d be waiting for someone to come fix that aweful mess and worrying about animals escaping.

The fence is now producing back 7,500 volts, where upon investing initially it was only producing 2,500. Running all these miles of fence needs a lot of juice (electricity) but knowing how to problem solve and why fences lose amperage is important. Just one more bit of knowledge us farmers need to know.

I did also manage to transition the cows to a new grazing paddock. Hopefully it will keep them occupied with I put together a new hay feeder and set out more hay. 

5:57 pm update:

When headed out to do evening chores, I noticed a huge pile of feathers on the barn floor. Apparently that blasted fox has struck again in a different method! He nabbed one of my heritage turkeys. I’m not sure if he got the last hen left or not. I’ll have to watch the ones I have left tomorrow.

These blasted fox are causing a nightmare. Last fall they killed my older heritage turkey hen and 9 little poults. They have scattered cows and spooked them thru fences. Now more feathers and another bird missing. 

It’s not even the financial loss that makes me mad. It’s the simple fact that they are causing issues and creating financial loss! Poults at a day old are worth $15 each. At 6-months, they are worth $50-75 and sometimes more.

Fence damage takes hours to fix that I am not earning back, unless I follow it thru pricing. As cute as the blasted things are, they create expensive havoc! Worse yet, if I want them relocated, I have to pay for that too. Now I need to decide to call DEC and just shoot it or what to do.

Fox can also bring in a load of other diseases too, like mange and rabies. Working within Mother Nature is a complexity of decision making factors. Sometimes, everything cohesively blends and others it’s a nightmare in the making.

Monday’s… even the bane of farmers days!


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