Feeling the balance

We came to this place so we could spend more time with the living world – be that growing vegetables, observing birds, eating eggs, breeding pigs…

Every day, in little ways, we become aware how complex that relationship is.

Pheasants, for example, are problematical birds – not really wild, not really stock. You may have seen some of our previous pheasant conundrums but recently the cock has disappeared as we are told the males always do at this time – where? why? – while the hen is presumably sitting as she turns up briefly once a day and is pleased if corn is supplied quickly so she can get back to her incubation.

And then today here she is

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with a buzzard standing guard in all his magnificence.

That was a bird we were not responsible for yet chose to interact with.

Good news: we heard the cuckoo today.

The pigs are are in the frightening category of stock who are totally dependent on us. Observing and assisting, for the first time, in the birth of mammals bigger than ourselves, has been an interesting experience.

We feel a sense of achievement in that the seven live-borns have survived two days and nights without being sat on. But it is not sentimental down there.

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Competition for teats is fierce – there may seem plenty to go round for seven mouths but some are better than others and if you are slightly weaker you get elbowed out and the gap between the weakest and the strongest grows.

When Spot nips out to feed

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the piglets huddle in a corner

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or line up

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weakest at the ends, strongest in the middle where it is warm.

 

Pethan eraill yn y tyddyn heddiw:

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