Alpaca & Muscovy

Monthly Archives: March 2018

Husbandry ADE time again at Kensmyth, Clay Meadow

Never have the Alpaca needed their ADE vitamin jabs as this winter – due to their origins they need topping up with the vitamins that they would normally receive from Sunshine. Sunshine? What IS that this Winter? LOL

I am soo pleased that our Sharps Bin – a must for all Livestock Farmers – shows that we still have a way to go to fill our 2015 bin. Meaning that we do not “overdo” it with any injections!

Sensible paddock rotation, no overstocking and no need to endlessly “jab” with wormers – nope doesn’t happen here!

Funny how most people do not know that you have to have a Sharps Bin and you cannot throw needles away…

Have you booked your shearers yet? Kensmyth, Clay Meadow

Those of us in the Alpaca world a long time know that shearers need to be booked a year in advance. Most receive phone calls and texts in January and February to book the larger herds which are done first. Unfortunately for those with only a few Alpaca they are then fitted in later in the year. Inclement weather and the inability to get your herd in for shearing means that shearers will not do it when it is wet – this has become an increasing welfare issue over time as many Alpaca have ended up unshorn. Our sheep are shorn separately.

We are delighted that we have always been able to have our herd shorn to the timings we prefer and although it is hectic – its always fun. A real family affair with many cakes eaten and beers had when it is finished.

I have been threatening Ollie with the shearers – who do you think needs it most?



a SNOWPAN and a SENSE OF AN ENDING… in the snow at Clay Meadow

Many regular readers will see the pun here as it is a book I reviewed many moons ago – my sense of humour is slowly returning after not being able to shower for 3 days or flush the toilet – don’t let your mind wander on that one… but here are a few funny pictures of those “farming times” to make you chuckle…

   What the heck happened here Mum???

  on melting snow to make our coffee (no water) I did not have the heart to tell hubby that it looked awfully like a dog wee on that Snowman!!!

that’s farming for you! LOL


Emergency measures in farming – thats a fact

Well we don’t “get it bad” in the South at all but if you think you want to be a farmer, look back at this week end and understand what “frozen” means. Not only were our troughs and water pipes frozen – necessitating the transportation of water by carrier to livestock in barns – it also meant our house was frozen. No water for face, teeth, shower, toilet, coffee – you name it. Three days of no water meant that and if you cannot cope with conditions like this – do not be a Farmer because livestock come first.

Hay bales and straw bales were used even inside the barns to shield from the snow blasting in from the East from the open fronts and snow surround – we worked all hours of the day and night to keep our livestock safe –

as for coffee for us? melted snow in a pan – Yup not joking… I really appreciate not only my neighbours but also how much we waste water and should not do now that we have had to carry every last drop for the past three days.

Thank goodness it has thawed out now and the refillable drinkers are working again!

Celebrating life lost and appreciating friends and what you have

We should have been celebrating my Brothers life today – tragically lost not so long ago – instead we are celebrating the fact that we have such excellent understanding neighbours (newly married couple too) who helped us – by endlessly supplying us hundreds and hundreds of litres of water for our livestock as our entire farm froze…

Beast from the East arrives at Kensmyth, Clay Meadow

Farmers always prepare for the worst and hope for the best of the Weather. However,  circumstances here dictate that when the Beast from the East threatened, we knew it would be bad. Open fronted Barns at the top – well we all live and learn how to do it differently next time don’t we – meant that the Beast was coming and would get in everywhere, combined with literally a deep freeze.

The canal froze:

I have not seen that in over six years of being here…

The snowdrifts on the Cirencester Road were literally an incredible 5ft high in places…