Thursday, 17 September 2015

It's been a busy old time!

No excuses really for not keeping my blog updated - all good intentions to write at least once a week just goes out of the window when other things come along.

There is plenty to blog about too!

We have ten acres of land and we are not making best use of it, so we have decided that we need to make the land more productive. Some big decisions needed as it means more work is required to be done outside, and that has meant that social time is impacted as i still have a business or two to run too!

Earlier last year we decided to stop breeding llamas, we are finding it difficult to make the llamas pay for them selves as we struggle to sell some of our youngsters off. In December we had Nazca, our older entire male castrated as he had failed to produce any youngsters for two seasons. Nazca is a great male, well trained to the halter, you just have to show it to him and he puts his head in.

Anyhow, as we couldn't put him in with the other entire male Llancellot we put him in with a few females, thinking that he hadn't done anything the past two years, he won't do anything this time - how wrong we were - look what he produced:-

Misty on the left and Happy on the right (short for Miss Take and Miss Hap) and Happy really does take after her dad Nazca!

When we were breeding - haha - we had four  large enclosures built, with small shelters to keep the stud males in - at one time we had three studs - and we also used them as "sick bays" or as "maternity wings" depending on what was happening, but with no studs left, we do have the ability to keep most of the herd together - with the two new arrivals we now have 21 llamas - but as is the way, the ex-studs still fight and have to be kept apart, and Wilbur doesn't get on with either of them, so he has to be kept apart too, so we still have three groups, but we do not need all of the enclosures, so we have bought in some of these fine creatures:-

Boer goats - these are four young doelings - just weaned from mum - two pairs of twins, and we hope to start breeding from them next winter (2016/17) and will be on the lookout for a buckling in the spring!

These now live in one of the enclosures, the one with the biggest shelter, and they will live there in the summer months. In the winter, our billies will live up there as they are a bit hardier and these girls will share the space around the workshop where our girl pygmy goats live.

One of the other enclosures is being fenced up to take a variety of chickens, the first one is up and has Light Sussex in and next year I hope to add 2 or 3 other varieties - particularly interested in having some Rhode Island Reds and some Cuckoo Marans, and maybe we will have one enclosure of ducks too!

Well, that's this weeks update, follow us on Twitter at @llamakevin for daily updates on what is going on at Ashwood Llamas.