Posted by: kathandroger | July 18, 2016

Sheep swapping and baby Bats.

Our little flock of sheep has been modified. We lost one of the mothers after she gave birth this year, and we needed another female for breeding next year. Luckily we have a neighbour who keeps a few sheep and he was happy to swap one of his females for one of ours, an unrelated lamb who could breed with old Hercules our ram. The swap was unremarkable, and after the initial bullying and bleating, all seems to have settled down.IMG_3438She has been named Flossie, and was already sheared although she is this years lamb. It seems to be the norm in France to shear the lambs, but I have never known it to be done in the UK. She is a bit small, but hopefully will give us some new babies in the spring. Hercules seems to like her already.IMG_3439

This is the season for bat breeding. We find lots of dead baby bats in our boiler room, and it upsets me as bats only have on newborn each year. Some seem to be successful however, and this pair on the dogs towel were gone the next day.IMG_3429I have looked for the colony in the roof and have not been able find it, but today, because of the coming heatwave, we closed the shutters on the front of the house, and dozens of bats flew out! I managed to get this snap before they all flew off.IMG_3443It was wonderful to see bats flying around the courtyard in company with our swallows, each as fast as the other, and a rare sight indeed.

Chickens can’t fly very well. They also can’t swim very well. Sooty, one of our new acquisitions, is a very inquisitive animal, who has learned to lay eggs in our herb box just outside the kitchen, decided to go for a swim yesterday. We were both relaxing outside when the shrieks of panic from the pool area made us jump up and run to the rescue.IMG_3440.JPG

Even the lazy old dog came to help Kath lift her out. Boudie is terrified of the water herself, and gave Sooty lots of advice afterwards.

France is a sad place again this week. We heard the news of the massacre in Nice on our way back from a firework display in out local town. At this stage it appears it may have been the work of one isolated madman, but the slaying of normal families, including innocent children, has been abhorrent. I can’t say that we feel any more threatened personally here after the latest attack, but we will all be a little fearful in the big cities in future.


Responses

  1. Some wonderful shots of the bats. How lovely to see a baby up close. And how funny of the chook to decide to go swimming.

    I agree about the Nice attack — a lone madman who decided to take others out while he committed suicide. It is the killing of so many children that has been the truly shocking part. The chateaux here are taking security a lot more seriously this year I notice.

  2. More baby bats misery this week, sadly. I have found several dead ones recently and it is sad when they apparently only produce one infant a year.


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