Tuesday, 29 October 2013

The dark side grows stronger!

Yesterday saw the arrival in Patouland of three, year old, brown females. They have settled in well and have already laid three eggs (presumably one each). Not alpacas of course but hens!
There is a free range egg farm near us and sadly after the chickens are 60 weeks old they are deemed to be insufficiently productive so they go off to meet their maker whilst a new batch of young layers arrive.

The egg farmer is very keen to rehome as many as he can so we took three home, we would have loved more but at the moment we can't take more than three. The naming ceremony has sort of taken place and at the moment we have named one each. So here are Clementine, Laura and Lambo, (please note the liberal use of baling twine used to repair the Eglu run. I am working on plans for a large run but for the time being they are confined to barracks. I suspect it is a bit of a culture shock for them coming from a flock of 38,000 down to 3! 

A couple of weeks ago we did welcome some new alpacas which I hinted about a few months ago. 
I shook on a deal back in early July to buy four females. Three black and one dark brown. They were all pregnant to Popham Thunder and I was keen to get some of his genetics into the herd. Once the deal was done we waited for news of their cria, some lovely black and brown females to take the herd forward would be nice. 
However, one by one news came of the arrival of a male cria, three black and one brown. Not a female in sight, can you believe it! Still all is not lost, all four have been remated to Thunder and all are spitting off nicely. Next year four lovely females please!
I must say Thunder does do a good job, they are all nice but two of them are very promising.

This is Samantha, she is a little bit of a munter (slightly odd shaped head) but has produced the best of the four cria a very nice brown male called Warrior (no pressure then little man!).

And here is little Warrior, a lovely brown colour, great head and a very nice fleece indeed.


Now the other three are a bit more of a challenge for me. Because it has pretty much rained constantly since they arrived and because the first week they spent in a huddle miles away from everyone else I haven't quite got who is who sorted out. So here are some pictures of the other arrivals.

 This one is............ a black female, with a black male cria.

This is another black female with a black male cria.

Here is the final new girl, as you can see, a black female.


Here is her cria,............................................. possibly.

Or it could be this one. 

I will be getting to know them all very well from now on as I have hung up my truncheon for the very last time. I am now, officially, a farmer!

Monday, 14 October 2013

Where have I been!

Crikey, I have just looked and it is over 2 weeks since I last drivelled out a post on this blog, which is supposed to tell the tale of the Mighty Patou Tribe.Not much of a tale of late!
I have been in a complete and utter brain fizz. As I mentioned at the end of the last blog post I am retiring from the day job. This has caused quite an effect on my ability to function at anything other than 'a frantic, not achieving very much whilst expending a lot of energy type way'.

I suppose 25 years of pulling on a uniform, going to work at all times of the day and night, dealing with the worst the world has to offer, seeing strange things, horrific things, weird things, amusing things, incredulous things but mainly stupid things daily has kind of programmed me to wake up expecting to immerse myself back into that world. I can't quite believe that it is soon to be over.
I won't miss much of it I can tell you. I will miss the people that I viewed all of that with and I will miss the fun times I have had along the way, of which there have been many, but dealing with the sort of people that we tend to have to deal with regularly, no, I will not miss that at all.
Anyway at the time of writing I have seven 9 hour shifts left. Although I don't expect I will be doing much on the last one as I will have handed in my handcuffs, pepper spray, baton and the rest of the kit.

So, in two weeks, officially, when asked what my occupation is I will be able to answer 'Alpaca Breeder!'. That puts the pressure on a bit!
I will also be concentrating on another line of possible income but I won't bore you with the details of that.

So, the future, the Mighty herd now numbers 62 in total and we have 24 cria due next summer from five different stud males and that I find extremely exciting! In fact just writing that is making me feel like stripping off and galloping round the paddocks in the rain shouting complete and utter nonsense!

Perhaps I'll just have a wee dram and calm down a bit.

All that is left is to tell you all about the exciting and prestigious show that is coming up next month!

Closing date for entries is the 23rd of October so get on it NOW!! It is going to be great!