Reblogging: Lambing

Here’s the second of an occasional reblogging series from my seven-year catalogue of posts.

oooOOOooo

It’s not as if I need an excuse to go up to Margaret’s farm for a natter and a cup of tea.  She’s my friend.  But in spring, my visits might be a little more regular than usual and last a little longer too.

Lambing

The ewe isn’t that happy about my visit

Margaret’s sheep pens are the place to be in April, full of expectant and new mothers, and I’m often to be found lurking about with my camera, smelling of compost.

Lamb

A lamb more so

But I don’t suppose I shall ever take better photos of Margaret’s lambs than I did three years ago.  On that occasion, I rushed up from The Priory to see my first lamb birth and in the ensuing … well, if you missed the blog post in April 2015, here it is again.

 

LAMBING

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Out To Pasture

It’s that time of year again.  I’ve shown the annual turning out of cows to pasture before (See ‘A Stampede of Cows’) but as it is such a big event in my calendar (party invites having  dried up somewhat), I’ll share it with you once more.

Cows out to pasture (2)

Margaret warns me when the release is imminent and I drop what I’m doing in the garden and walk up through the fields to the farm.

Cows out to pasture (3)

I stand on my favoured spot

Cows out to pasture (4)

– a tree stump behind a small hedge –

Cows out to pasture (5)

from where my 300mm lens suggests I’m far, far braver than the reality.

Cows out to pasture (6)

This is the one day of the year when I see these hefty animals

Cows out to pasture (7)

galloping at full pelt

Cows out to pasture (8)

and hurtling straight towards me.

Cows out to pasture (9)

Except for a handful, who don’t.

Cows out to pasture (10)

And this is the moment when I seriously doubt the wisdom

Cows out to pasture (11)

of standing behind thin,

Cows out to pasture (12)

A very rare four-eared calf

insubstantial bits of hawthorn.

Cows out to pasture (13)

The rarer still levitating calf

(At the last moment, the herd always swerves to one side and passes though an opened gate on my right.  So far).

Cows out to pasture (14)

The calves, born inside the sheds, haven’t been outside before, and after a quick glance back at their mothers,

Cows out to pasture (15)

hare off to explore a whole new world, as I would.

Cows out to pasture (16)

I’ve suggested to Margaret that she sell tickets.

Cows out to pasture (17)

She had a team of helpers this year

Cows out to pasture (19)

to enjoy the fun; round-up stragglers;

Cows out to pasture (18)

and herd them into the next field.

Cows out to pasture (1)

With Margaret leading the way, we urged them on and across the Priory drive (with pickets posted to stop them bolting up the drive to the village or down to the Priory gardens) and through to another field beyond.  Job done.

Cows out to pasture (20)

The daffodils are over but the cows are back.  It’s almost summer.