Friday, March 31, 2006

That Dang Buck

That dang buck is getting out of hand. We have a large buck that is trying to become herdmaster by splitting the herd. He has succeeded in getting a large number of the younger adult and kids to follow him. His pitch is that he can lead them to better feed off of our land. He and his mini-herd have been breaking out and feeding off of our neighbors' land. Unfortunately, many of these are former suburb dwellers and take a very dim view of the whole thing.

The long-term solution is for that buck to go to auction.

The short-term solution involves reviewing every foot of fence to ensure he does not have a way to get out. An obvious solution would be to lock him up in the barn compound. The barn compound is currently serving as our puppy nursery and the puppies are still too young to get out of this buck's way.

Net result, it looks like this weekend will involve a lot of fence work. Now, if the weather will only hold.....

Thursday, March 30, 2006

Our Herdmaster

Our logo - He looks just like our herdmaster. Our appologies to the artist for not giving credit. Unfortunately, we do not have artist's full name or web site Posted by Picasa

We went to a job fair sponsored by the local newspaper of a neighboring town. Unfortunately, ranching does not make us much money and an in-town job is an important source of additional income. The pickings at the job fair were pretty thin, unless you wanted police or medical work. Three local customer service sites were represented - one representing a wireless telephone company, one representing a credit card company, and the third was not even telling prospective employees who they would be representing.

While were all dressed up, we also made the rounds of the local banks to try and find a new primary bank. The "service fees" charged by our present bank are getting out of hand - they are charging $33.00 for a overdraft and the monthly charge has gone up to $7.50 per month. We signed up with a competitor whose fees are much lower.

After all that, when we got back to the ranch, we went out to the east pasture and resumed clearing fence line. Some "mountain cedar" trees have grown up through the fence over the years and they have to be cleared before we can replace the wire mesh. The old mesh has holes that the herd can walk right through. Even with a chain saw, this is slow work.

When we bedded the animals down for the night, we noticed that one of the puppies appeared to be a little weak. We brought her up to the ranch house and gave her a supplemental feeding and she perked up considerabley. We are going to have to watch the litter more closely. The mother may be having trouble providing enough milk for all ten surviving puppies and if we do not supplement, some of the puppies may not get enough milk to thrive.

Monday, March 27, 2006

Day Two

Well, another puppy didn't make it. We are down to nine - eight of them female. I hope the rest survive.

Pretty quiet day. I work off of the ranch during the week. I had to put in overtime today.

At home, the children worked on some homework. Our son did not work on his term papaer about the Netherlands. I hope he does not let time run out, and then expect to get in done in a flash of smoke and mirrors.

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Day One

Today, we took a day off. With a friend and her daughter, we went to one of the local lakes for a day of fishing. Our friend got the only fish and, since one is not enough for dinner, we let it go at the end of the day. My daughter and my wife seemed to do a great job of snaring each other's line. My son did an excellent job of snaring his own line. As for me, I fared little better. I found a fish, but I could not catch him. The first lure was too big to swallow; he just played with it. The next lure I tried stayed too close to the surface to interest him. The next lure he took for about a twenty foot ride before I lost him. After that, I lost all track of him - he probably moved on. Oh, well. It was a good day of fishing, anyway.

When we got home, we checked on the puppies that were born last week. All ten surviving puppies are doing well, in spite of the weather. It has been colder at night this week that it was all winter. The goats, the dogs and the cats were all fed and watered for the night.