Thursday, June 5, 2014

Red Polls In The North Field

I've wanted to get the cattle into the north pasture so that I could rotate them between fields, allowing the grass to grow or be eaten, giving me opportunity to manage the growth of the grass and keeping the cows always in fresh pasture. So one day I lured them across the road with bowls of grain and a cowbell:

They ate only grass at first, but then I decided to carry grain out to them once a day to keep them tame:

And the chickens quickly learned that the cows were sloppy eaters, dropping grain in the grass which they could then grab with their little beaks and gulp down. So ringing a cowbell brought not only the cattle, but also the chickens:

Everything went like clockwork for a couple of days. I led the cows into the north field every morning and back into the south field every evening:

Until one evening when the Red Poll girls, full of energy from the lush grass and the additional grain, decided to bolt while crossing the road. Some ran down the road and some ran up the road. Then they collected into a group once again, running joyously around the house, punching deep hoof marks into the soggy lawn. I tried to herd them back to the gate, but that only added to their fun and they kicked up their heels like youngsters. And they were driving me me to distraction. Finally, they went back into the north field on their own. I quickly shut the gate and decided to leave them there for at least a few weeks:

Does this face look guilty? Well, it should:

So the daily routine of a grain feeding continued. They didn't need any grain for their health, but it helped keep them tame:

And the chickens joined every feeding:

The girls shed their brown winter coats and sported shiny, red springtime coats which glistened in the sun:

They spent several weeks in the north field:

One day the Shadbush trees began to bloom and the red cows looked lovely with a background of green leaves, white Shadbush and birch trees:

I knew I'd have to bring them back across the road sooner or later, but all was well for the time being:

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