Sweet Harmony Farm

  (Deerfield, New Hampshire)
Simple joys of the alpaca life ...........
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A Warm Spring Day

I would love to have all summer days just like yesterday - mid 80’s with lots of sun and a gloriously strong warm breeze.  Stella has been chasing butterflies, running like a puppy on too-long legs.  When she gets hot she finds a cool spot in the dirt under my car or in the grassy shade from the trailer.  Daffodils and forsythias are blooming.   I can see the daylilies all popping up, their tips a deep green.  Birds are everywhere this time of year, singing cheerfully while they gather up supplies to build nests.   This morning I could hear the familiar rubbing noises on the outside of the logs here in the den.  That noise is a mama robin, building a nest on the criss-crossed corner of our log cabin, in the shade of a large maple tree.  Lately we’ve been seeing a smaller bird flying in and out of the barn also carrying grass and such in its beak.  This type of bird built a nest in the barn last year, up in the ceiling peak near the light.  It built a smaller nest in the next light to watch over its babies’ nest, and it would often perch on the fence nearest the barn to watch Dan and me.  It’s not really gray yet not really green either, but never stays still long enough for us to get a good look.  Anyone have any idea what type of bird it could be?

I wouldn’t be concerned normally about the alpacas on a very warm day like yesterday but they are still in full fleece.  Shearing Day isn’t for another few weeks.  They must be roasting in those wool coats!  My feet were definitely toasty in my Muck boots (time to get those purple clogs!)  I checked in on them again at noontime and everyone looked the same as any other day so that’s good.  I put out another bucket of cold water from the well pump for them.  Not that I really think 5 non-breeding male alpacas would drink 10 gallons of water in an afternoon, but I felt better!  I was going to put ice cubes in the water too but then I know I’d be concerned that they would swallow an ice cube whole and choke, thanks to my wild imagination, so an extra bucket of water it is.

The boys are still not too sure about their new bale feeder, except for Guinness, always except for Guinness, aka ‘Grumpy’ on our little farm.  He’s never shy when it comes to being fed!  Guinness will gladly munch and munch from the hay feeder, and fuss loudly and sometimes spit when another one of the boys comes over to eat too.  Even Julio walked away today, too hot to fuss back.   Eventually Guinness will walk away too; then the others will approach.  The bale in this new feeder is going down, down, down, so I know it’s not just Guinness eating from it, even if it seems that way sometimes.  This new feeder is in the barn under the awning in the shade, so I was happy to see them eating hay in the shade while the afternoon was so warm.

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