Friday, June 25, 2010
We pick our paddocks every other day, at least.
We use straw bedding to break down faster.
We turn our manure.
We cover our manure with special covers to keep the right level of moisture and let it breathe.
We take the temperature of our manure to make sure it is decomposing and killing bacteria and fly larvae.
We rotate our grass paddocks.
We have sacrifice paddocks.
We are solar.
We collect rain water off the roof and filter it and use it for drinking water.
We sweat a lot and go through a lot of pairs of gloves, this is a lot of hard work.
Well, lucky us: the state of Connecticut recognizes farms like ours with an award!!!
I took three inspectors on tour. One from the DEP, one from UConn, one from some water awareness soemthingorother. They apparently liked the place and today I was presented with our award!!
It is an awesome program. They will come out to your farm, recognize good practices, and make recommendations if they see things that they don't like. If they really like your practices, they give you an award. It is a great support for us to be able to call and ask questions, find out things or check to see if we are doing things correctly. And we are. YAY!!!
Here is the "turning bin". The freshest stuff goes here, gets covered, then moved and turned to another bin.
170* Nice and hot. This means that any bad stuff is killed.
Monday, June 21, 2010
Java and Lucie (aka Moosie) were out in the top paddock yesterday morning and all was well... until one of them got running confused with grazing. So I separated them.
The one that does not run stayed on the grass... that would be Java.
Playing, feeling good, getting a little fun in between grazing, that's fine. Running like a dope and looking for attention warrants a demotion.
We got a nice rain mid-day yesterday, then they went back out. Yes, I bring them in when we get a good hard rain. :)
Java back out after the rain. It's close enough to dinner time that she is staying near the barn. She does not get dinner, or breakfast, but she likes being with her peeps for their meals.
Stretch holding down the fort (that's his head in the window on the right). He ends stall rest this Saturday.
We are counting down the days, I am so happy for him that he will be out and get to be a horse again. He has been a very good boy. At times a crazy horse, but that's understandable.
Java still grazing...
Mr Java's Mom and I put a little splash tub in the paddock for Java (to the left of her head in this photo).
She likes to paw the water and splash herself. SPOILED. She has a separate bucket for drinking.
This is taken from the far side of the paddock... the side Java should graze more often, the grass is nicer back here. She is in the background in the middle of the photo looking at me wondering what I'm up to. We were checking fence.
Thursday, June 17, 2010
Hey mom, does this grass make my butt look fat?
Stretch, what do you think (he's looking out the window, he's still on stall rest)?
OK mom, what about this angle. Do I still look fat?
I'll eat while you think about that...
Does this angle still make me look fat?
Yum! This is good stuff.
Oops, Stretch, did you hear that? Its actually really not tasty. Too long to taste good.
What did you say, I can't hear you with my head in the grass like this:
OK, I think I look less fat from this angle.
Java and I had a great ride yesterday. And, we're heading out for another ride now. Mr. Java's Mom mowed this paddock the day after these pics. Java did a test graze for me, the grass is not established enough for grazing full time yet. So it's mowed and resting more. Good thing, she does not exactly need any more weight on her. :)
Wednesday, June 16, 2010
Bandy has taken the paw problem into her own... hands? and is mostly better. Front paw: all fixed. She licked it better. Back paw... not lame on it, but it is irritated. I would categorize the issue somewhere close to athlete's foot. She got a hair cut around the paw and it is being treated successfully.
Bandy says: I feel good. Back to business.
Java and Moosie (that name! Lucie would be so much nicer...) out this morning.
Java yesterday came in for a nap.
We are going for a ride this morning... I hope!
Wednesday, June 9, 2010
Java first thing in the morning: This is her, "hi mom, please take me out to the grass now" look. She gets no grain right now. She has become a very easy keeper, so she gets to be out on the grass all day, and comes in at night to rest and eat a little hay. Since she does not get much hay either, just enough to keep her busy when in the barn, by morning, she is done with this stall/barn stuff and ready to go back out.
Just a few minutes later, she is where she wants to be.
Moosie pretends that she is starving, inhales her grain and supplements, and then stuffs as much hay into her mouth as possible... even though she eats more hay than Java... and Stretch actually. It is strange, but she does not like being out on the grass for more than an hour. After about an hour, she runs and runs and runs. SO... dirt lot with hay for you. Maybe she will adjust eventually.
What I really see in this picture is the steam coming out of the manure cabana behind her.
Poor pretty Stretch is on stall rest. He is fighting an infection in his abdomen and is only responding to one med. The one med that is administered safest via catheter. He did not respond to any other meds, we tried them all... and this is the ONE med. He has been on stall rest for 3 weeks, and has 3 more to go. Actually 16 days, but who's counting. He has handled stall rest incredibly well. But, sometimes, he really really wants to go out. He gets hand grazed and walked by me, but it's not the same as getting to go out, roll inthe dirt and be a horse. Sometimes he wants to kill me, but since he has not succeeded yet, we take this day by day. He is a wonderful horse, I don't get mad at him, even when he gets a little feisty.
Stretch's Feisty Look:
Stretch with a more sane look: