Yesterday marked a major first: First large animal born on the farm! She is a heifer calf and her name is Xena, Warrior Princess. Xena, Warrior Princess is a Hereford, not a Highland, so, as a polled cow amongst horned cattle, she'll have to grow up tough. Seeing the incredible heavy bone on that hour-ish old baby, I'm not too worried.
Here is Xena:
Here is her mama, Sunshine. Sunshine has been an awesome mama so far!
In other news, there are NEW adorable baby bunnies! These are supposed to be lops, like this bunny here:
Daddy is a French Lop and mama is a Mini Lop, both pedigreed. One baby doesn't seem to have gotten the memo about being a lop, however. He gets it in one ear, but not the other. One ear is lopped and the other ear is "Bongo," and that configuration seems to be semi-permanent. Halflop:
... Two was definitely not enough.
... The best part is that now, they are running around the courtyard, so when I look out the window I am liable to become temporarily paralyzed with cute.
Evidently, it could! The chickens have been laying for well over a month now; we've got eggs in the 'bator and more eggs under a questionably broody Cochin. (She seemed pretty determined until I swapped her eggs out with the eggs from my bantam pen. I don't *think* she noticed the substitution ...) We've even had one clutch of eggs so far from the downstairs camp.
Then, of course, there are baby mammals. My husband especially likes the bunnies, so he keeps asking me, morning after morning, if there are any baby bunnies yet. (We have one buck, a gorgeous SQ French Lop, in with a couple of does, so it's a valid question.) All of the bunnies live in a courtyard along with the chickens, so I had kind of figured that the two may be incompatible, and the usual answer, day after day, was "No." I did check for them, and I knew enough to sift through the hay a little bit to make sure there was no hidden nest ... But still, no bunlets.
Thursday morning, we had the same exchange: "Any baby bunnies?" "Nope, no bunnies." ... Except that I was wrong. I was, as it turns out, at least a couple weeks' worth of wrong. I checked under one hiding spot, gave the usual "No," went into the chicken house, looked into a nest box and saw this:
Yes, those pictures were taken that very day. Yes, I felt very silly. Mama bunny had done what bunnies do best: protecting her babies from the alien birds and strange bipeds that she has to live with. She protected them for what looks to be a good couple of weeks, and then the baby bunnies got a little too big to hide, creating the illusion that they had suddenly eclosed, or else that they were born fully-formed, like a chinchilla or a hare. (They hadn't, of course. Domestic rabbit kits are autricial -- they are born with their eyes closed, fully dependent on mom, unlike hares, which are precocial and born ready to run.)
... The bunnies have it: spring has emerged!
K writes this stuff, for some reason that has yet to become apparent.