Friday, March 18, 2016

The Red Poll Girls As Winter Comes To A Close

The girls have seemed almost immune to the cold and snow, though I worried a lot about the slippery ice during the early part of the month. This is Scarlett, apparently wondering what all the fuss was about:

And Rosella, who likes to stand under the Box Elder tree while I clean out the manure in the barn:

When they're not eating or pooping, they're usually lounging around, chewing their cuds:

Frozen hay doesn't seem to slow them down. They know how to get to the tasty centers of the bales:

And most of the girls don't mind me walking around them at all. In fact, I keep a hand on their back to steady myself, especially when it's icy, and so they know where I am at all times. If they get in my way, I just push them with my shoulder. It seems to be how they act with each other, so they don't consider it out of line at all for me to do so:

This is Amy, the cow who was undersized and oddly proportioned when she arrived. Good food and gentle care have helped her to blossom into a fine cow:


And lounging time:

That's Gracie in the foreground but I can't tell who that is behind her:

Violet, number 35, is the cow who trusts me the least. She heard me coming and turned around to keep an eye on me. She isn't mean, she just isn't big on being touched by people:

Their hay has been fed to them all winter on the east side of the barn to help protect them from westerly winds. It also means they are close to the gravel road and easily viewed by passersby and by me. I always check to be they're all OK before I leave in the car to go anywhere:

One Sunday morning I checked before leaving for church and everything was fine. When I got home, I checked again and this is what I found. They'd managed to get both hay bales out of the feeder and rolled some distance away, and Rosella was trapped inside the bale feeder with nothing to eat. She wasn't at all concerned, though, so I went into the house and changed clothes before I corrected the situation:

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