Tuesday, March 29, 2011


ah yes, another baby for the farm, this time from the formidable queen herself, Miss Piggy, aka Kentucky Ranger (on her "birth certificate").

Miss Piggy was aptly named due to her amazing appetite and, due to her huge bulk, is able to claim most of any feed situation, even if it entails standing sideways across a feeder, blocking access to any and all who dare get near, just in case she cannot have enough to eat....which of course, is never the case. She is also a master at stockpiling hay, pushing as much as possible (for later) at one guarded end of the feeder, and helping herself to whatever else she can eat in the meanwhile.

Why do I go into such detail about a particular cows eating habits you may wonder? Does this woman have a life? you may ask?

Well......this is why........Miss Piggy had a very big miniature Hereford bull calf! I have read where the mothers nutrition level can and does affect the size and health of the calf, and let me tell you, they are right! This boy is big for a baby!

Now he will grow up to be a fine miniature Hereford bull, and as far as I can tell, he is polled as well as all the other Hawkeye offspring, but boy, what a big little dude he is! And Miss Piggy had him all by herself in the barn early this morning. Little Onyx, same sire, was tiny, a fine little calf for a first calf heifer, and no problem at all.

More on this later, along with some pictures as soon as he dries off and looks adorable - normal in a day or so. Until then, more hay for the mom, some TLC, and a really nice little bull - brother for Onyx to keep company with this summer!

Picture of Miss Piggy, summer pasture grass - fat.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

More pictures of Onyx, polled miniature Hereford bull

I could not resist posting these pictures of little Onyx taken today. Unfortunately they are off my BlackBerry, but of course, I did not have a camera handy while doing chores....you know how that goes....what is so amazing is how fast these little ones learn about stuff, as this picture shows Onyx already licking the mineral mix in the pan.... at just 8 days old.

A beautiful sunny, but cold, Sunday. Still snow on the ground....oh spring, where art thou??


Saturday, March 26, 2011

Onyx: polled miniature Hereford bull calf

Well here he is at one week old, hanging out by the hay wagon soaking up some sun. I could not believe my eyes when I saw him eating hay already.....!

His face is so silky and soft, his little nose pink without a spot, and the curls on top of his head remind me of a white Peony...

All clean and white and bright...show room condition I would say...at least for now!

This is Hawkeyes second calf, both have been polled. Onyx is a stocky little fella with nice proportions (for a week old!) and very friendly (his momma Emerald is "follow- you- around -the- pasture - rest -my -horn- on- your- leg - friendly" ....)
Its nice to have babies in the barnyard again!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Sometimes its just hard.......

So we have this adorable little baby in a nice dry pen with her momma. Life is good. The next cow due to calve is Miss Piggy, due in another week or so. Tremendously rotund, plenty of winter fat and hair. Little Sprite, who will be a year old next month, is keeping her company. Unfortunately, they have also been kicked out of the barn / pen since baby was born, leaving them both to sleep out under the stars, which really isnt a major problem, except we now have cold icy rain mixed with snow and wind and temperatures dropping through the 20's......not good.

Poor little Sprite was shivering as she stood eating, and with the winds coming from the east, the barn did not afford any protection from the driving snow and cold winds....both were crusted with snow, icicles hung down their sides and off their bellies. They were clearly NOT HAPPY.

Nor was I.

At least a good hour later Miss Piggy was moved to the other side, where the four of them can figure out the barn sleeping arrangments....the barnyard was somewhat shoveled out and the gate removed from the pen...little Onxy shot out at a full run, never stumbling once, absolutely thrilled with the freedom of the barnyard paddock (even if it was covered in 6" of snow). His momma had quite a time keeping track of him as he zipped around and Sprite seemed very interested in a possible new playmate!

So some shoveling, some feeding, some cattle re-arranging, a minor repair to the pen divider, and lots and lots of dry straw bedding, everyone hopefully will be in and undercover on this cold and stormy night.

My family was not quite as understanding as I had hoped as dinner was later than usual and no one really seemed to interested in what was going on with the animals or the barn ....*sigh**


Sunday, March 20, 2011

Miniature Herefords and daughters....

Onyx at 2 days old, not shy and welcoming any and all attention; here, from my daughter Jolene.
I would have to say he probably weighed about 40 lbs. at birth judging from his size (yeah i know.... I need to weigh them......!)

Saturday, March 19, 2011

New baby!

Here is Emerald and her brand-new baby bull calf Onyx!
he was born, unassisted, sometime during the night while we slept......
When I checked them last evening at 9:30 all was well; quiet, everyone bedded down in the barn for the night....by morning the others were out looking for breakfast; I went to the barn to find Emerald and her new baby all cleaned up, dried off and sleeping contentedly.
Onyx is polled.
Emerald is a nice, sweet and friendly first calf heifer,sired by DLT Red Pride. I am impressed that she calved unattended, and had cared for her first calf so well......
Thankful :)

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Ah a warm day

FINALLY a break in the weather! Bluebirds and Red-Winged Blackbirds are back, Robins calling to eachother and Canadian Geese flying day and night overhead in huge numbers.

Had yesterday off and spent the day cleaning up around the barn, fixing gates ands getting ready for another load of hay and straw. I didnt want to be inside, but did manage to set up my painting easel in the room next to the kitchen>

Lately I have been having visions of paint being applied to large canvases (when I close my eyes)
and am very excitied about an upcoming college project of a large, mixed media, totally abstract work that will be getting underway very soon. I find myself drawn to abstract painting and drawing recently; it just seems so freeing......

I have a very pregnant heifer I've been keeping close watch on lately; she looks like any day, and I noticed she was not with the others out in the pasture today, choosing to remain by herself near the barn....which is not her normal behavior, so out to the barn I go, will move the big gate into the barnyard so she can calve in comfort and clean and dry surroundings; its just too muddy out there, and I dont want to see a newborn stumbling about in the mud and slop. The others will have to tough it out for a few days and stay out of the barn.....I'm sure they'll be just fine.
Picture of Blue with her heifer calf Emerald, summer 2008; Emerald herself is now due any day ....!

Monday, March 14, 2011

Hangin' out with Hawkeye

Actually I'm in the process of bedding the barn (once more....) Hawkeye seems to enjoy coming into the barm and standing under the straw as its thrown into the pens....which of course is not at all helpful when trying to move and fluff the pile of straw. He doesnt seem too interested in moving, either.

I think what he really wants is a good back scratch....

Snow flakes again today.....hoping for warmer temperatures later in the week.
Am running out of straw bedding; need to call for more. ........
camo hat quite the fashion statement, I know, right.....? *!*