Friday, August 8, 2008

Friday Feature - Sheep May Safely Graze*

One thing (of many) I've really enjoyed about running a blog is learning to do all sorts of new things. I remember, not really that long ago, when someone was showing me how to just get on the internet and how to use email. Now I'm formatting web pages, uploading pictures and basic videos and getting ready to learn how to edit my videos so they are actually enjoyable to watch.

Today's Friday Feature is just a minute of some of the adult sheep out grazing. It's not a great video, but here are a couple things I found interesting. Ford is the big horned sheep that walks up to me today. As he does, you see Henrietta walk away. In the background you see Beanie Baby pushing Elizabeth out of the way and Jester bumping Allie off his clump of grass. I like to watch my sheep throughout the day as I'm doing other chores and I just love to observe the general herd dynamics.

But let's go back to Ford. I've been wanting to tell you a story about him anyway. He was our breeding ram a few years ago and has since been "fixed". Fast forward a couple years to one day back this past winter. I had everyone up for a general check and to trim their feet. Ford (like all of our rams) has traditionally hid in the back behind all the girls. That day however he was out in front and it almost seemed like he was trying to hang out close to me. While none of our rams have ever been mean, you just don't, for safety reasons, ever trust a ram or want him hanging out with you, especially if he's acting a bit abby normal, as he was.

I tried to get him to back off, but couldn't. If you think hard enough about something like that, there is always an explanation - sort of like Border Collies, except sometimes you have to think really hard to figure out what they are thinking (just kidding Iris ;-). It finally dawned on me that the herd dynamics had changed and Ford's son Beanie Baby had taken over as top "ram" and therefore he was in the back of the pack and Ford had been kicked out. Ford didn't want to be out in front any more than I wanted him out there, but once we understood each other, everything worked just fine.

That he calmly walked right up to me out in the field today is unusual. None of our Jacobs except Henrietta have ever been very chummy with people and Ford tends to be one of the most shy. So, as I'm sitting on the mower today, I'll have something interesting to think about. Unless Iris figures it out first.

*Sheep May Safely Graze is from Bach's Cantata 208 and not a reference to safety on our farm, although if Boudreaux doesn't quit biting me while I'm trying to take pictures, he should maybe be learnin' to play that famous piece.

No comments:


Blog Widget by LinkWithin