Sunday, August 14, 2011

The Summer of Stupids. And Earwigs

This is just a quick post on a sleepy Sunday evening, but one I've been meaning to make for a while.

So, a few months ago when my last lambs were born, as I always do, I commissioned a neat little creep feeder for them to get in and enjoy some grain without having to compete with their bigger, more experienced mothers. This has never been a problem before.  Once the lambs figure out that it's easier and more readily available, in the feeder, free from overbearing mothers, they sneak in and snack.  Well, three creep feeder designs and nearly five months later and my lambs cannot figure it out.  I even went to the extreme  of shutting them in the feeder for a few days, making the grain available and showing them that it comes twice a day, at the same place.  Just be there.
Apparently, these lambs prefer the head butting that they endure when they dare to stick their heads in a place where their mothers and aunts may think for a minute that there might be a rare kernel of grain left.  They are the strangest lambs I've ever dealt with, and I have to admit that I will be glad to be rid of these ones.  They're jumpy and scared and make the whole flock nervous.  They tear around like small wooly jumping beans, never really relaxing and always ready for flight.  Here's hoping them make delicious chops!  Fresh lamb will be available soon, and it's limited, so get your orders in now!

The second stupids on the farm and the pasture chickens.  It usually only take a day or so in the pens to figure out that when the pen is moving, you should run the front to a)get the fresh grass and b)avoid the oncoming back wall of the pen.  Nope, not this year.  There is one pen in particular who seems to have an extra bad case of the stupids and has yet to figure out how it all works, twice a day. 

And I'm sure, if you live in an earwigged area, that you've noticed that this summer in particular is devastatingly bad for the disgusting (and hearty) little insects.  The farm is simply crawling with them and anything left on the ground is guaranteed to be an earwig condo within hours.  I am increasingly amazed at their resilience and determination, even though I truly hate them.  I wondered aloud the other day to Mark about how they know where to go to find good hiding spots and he responded, "I'm pretty sure they just keep going up.  They're at the top of the 40 tonne tank and I don't think they knew it was that high when they started." 

And speaking of bugs, I don't know whether to be ecstatic or disgusted, but I have found a new, bizarre joy of Lucy is to squish potato bugs (the fat, red, soft bodied larvae) with her bare fingers.  She likes the pop and explosion of guts.  She's a welcome weapon in my garden! 

Well, if I don't go to bed soon, I'm going to add myself to this list of summer stupids for 2011. 

Hope this finds you warm and dry, free from earwigs and pleasantly exhausted.


1 comment:

  1. There is one in this house who loves the squishing of potato bugs too so it is an inherited joy,but I love it better when there are none to squish. Then I can attack those old hard bugs that appear on the floor in old houses..