Tuesday, May 4, 2010


Last week we moved the young girls to their new shelter and paddock (their pasture is still in process. On Saturday we did pick up fence to put up, but it's not up yet.) Since moving them, we've found Tehya to be very anxious. She will stand by the fence to the other girl's area and click her tongue and hum. I took this picture from the older girls pasture, you can see Tehya and Cafe right by the fence line. Cafe is eating grain, but Tehya is just staring in:

The first few days after the move, Pocahontas was also upset, pacing at the fence line. But she seems to have calmed down. And actually, when Tehya doesn't know we are watching (we can see them from our dinning room and our bedroom window) she isn't acting that way. I've spied this:

All three of them, Tehya, Cafe and Pocahontas, are kushed in their shelter. Now I had to take that picture from our dinning room, because the second I open the door, Tehya will jump up and go to the fence line again.

I've heard that it's worse to move them if they can see through a fence line. It's actually better to be completely out of sight. So that might be part of this. I thought since they are already weaned, this wouldn't be an issue. Tehya is almost 2 years old, and been to many shows. You'd think she'd be ok being just over the fence from her mom. I also realize that when we've moved animals before, we have not only moved them out of sight, but to where we don't see them that much. Like the young weanling boys, we moved them up to the boys area. I stop by the feed them twice a day and every time we leave the house and come home we drive by them, so we do have regular contact with them. But we don't see them all the time. These girls are literally in our backyard, I can see them from where I am sitting in the house right now. So we see them constantly. For all I know, the weanling boys paced and whined for days after their move too. The only other move like this is when we moved the pregnant girls back here last spring. And if I remember right, that was difficult too. I remember Kateri standing by the gate humming and looking (I think for her baby), and Sancha was on edge. I think her issue was that she has never been in such a small herd. That move seemed difficult too, and it was the same sort of thing, where we can see them right in our backyard. We see all their behaviors. Maybe all moves are like this. It makes me sad to think they are upset. They must feel so powerless. Our plan was to make two areas, so that we can wean easier and so that the pregnant girls can have their new babies without worry about the yearlings. I know many big farms have lots of separate areas, even with fence lines that meet up. It seemed like such a good idea, until I look at Tehya there pacing and clucking. I hope they adjust to this move soon.

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