Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Nearing Vacation's End

We are nearing the end of our vacation and we will miss being home and working on the farm full time. We have been working hard and getting so much accomplished. It has been great going to bed around 9pm and getting up at 6:30am. What a big change from night shift. Coworkers can't understand "where we get our energy from". Being home and cleaning stalls out, chicken coop maintenance, putting fences up, all of these things bring joy and a sense of accomplishment and boosting our internal batteries. Nursing has always been a profession that is rewarding both emotionally and monetarily. It has allowed us to move and still be able to find employment even in economically trying times. We are thankful for that. When we started nursing it was exciting. We were learning new skills, felt like we were helping people, easing pain. It just felt good. However, it is emotionally draining to say the least. Both of us have been nurses for more than 25 years now. We are looking toward a more peaceful time. Less buzzers, alarms, and stress. We are getting a taste of the good life while on vacation. Like looking out of the barn door and seeing Edward in the mineral feeder taking a nap.

He is so cute. Just not in the mineral feeder.

We were able to finish fencing another pasture. We are very interested in pasture rotation. It is healthier for the animals, keeps parasites down, allows for less feed in the summer months and they just enjoy grazing on the fields. It is difficult to really see the fence here. The grass and weeds are tall and ready to munch. Every goat and icelandic sheeps' dream. If time permits this year we will start to fence an area in the woods. This will give the animals another browse source.

The new gate is in. The goats have already tried it out. No, they cannot push through. They have tried.
Ted is putting the green machine to work spreading rock and dirt into this corner. It gets standing water. An issue on our farm that we have been working on.
While he was backfilling the holes, Alex and I worked on putting up and repairing the electric fence. Still a work in progress.
After we finished for the day we let the goats try out the new pasture. They made a beeline for this poor shrub. I don't see a long life in it's future. The sheep could have cared less.
Edward has been dealing with a bout of Coccidosis. He developed diarrhea last week. I began giving him Pro-Bios and thought it was getting better. The sheep and goats have been getting some of the new hay. We attributed his gastric distress to this hay. None of the other animals were having any diarrhea. Monday, Edwards' diarrhea was worse. We took him to our vet, Foxcroft Vererinary Services in Dover-Foxcroft, Maine. Edward was very prompt with giving them a stool sample, all on the floor. They found high amounts of coccidia present. Evidently, he could have had it since birth. Edward is getting Albon daily with Pro-Bios 10gm and something called Bio-Sponge. We are treating all of the animals in the pasture with Corid, a coccidiostat in their water. Hopefully we will resolve this problem soon. I understand that diarrhea is deadly in goats due to dehydration. We are keeping a close eye on Edward. He is still giving goatie kisses and keeping up with his girls.
After a long hot day, the sun starts to disappear and we get the welcome cooling breezes. Just a touch of pink reaches the horizon. The chickens settle down, the guineas stretch out and snooze in the quiet barn. Then you hear a very soft maaaa from the goaties stall. I guess that is their way of saying good night. Much love and prayers from Mainely Ewes Farm.
Kelly

2 comments:

Lisa T. said...

Oh poor Edward. Did you ever in your wildest dreams think you would pray for little pellets of goat poop?

Are you going to the open farm bee thingy this weekend? Hopefully before my free one year membership runs out I'll be able to get to one, not this weekend though.

I know that having goats is the best education, but there is a farm in St. Albans that offers a goat school, that is VERY informative. The website is:
http://www.mainegoats.com/goat_school_2004.htm

Smiles,
Lisa

tonya fedders said...

Hoping little Edward makes a speedy and full recovery! With all the love, care, and good attention he's getting, I'm sure he'll be back to 100% in no time! best wishes.