SageHill Ranch Journal

SageHill

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You hardly ever see the cats, cougar or bobcats. They are silent, stealth hunters and although we have several here in the area we have iny seen a cou0le is 32 years. We know when a new one comes around because of the dogs, but they soon learn that hunting in our area is useless because the dogs alert all game to their presence.
I have only seen a bobcat here twice - early morning on my way out. Though on game-cams and security cams I catch them - not often - but they are definitely part of the way things are here.
 

SageHill

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Grazed a few hours this morning. Mostly on the lower north slope. Seemed to be the tastiest of the areas today.
The lambs are growing like weeds - they are almost the same size as Auntie Barb. They did enjoy the meadow some today and of course the south slope that has pretty much been a slow "drive-through" on the way back to the barn was pretty yummy today - tiny little yellow flowers were on the menu.
Lots of things getting done today - moving stuff to the storage area (palettes, T-posts, roofing tiles, etc), ranch road is being releveled. Tomorrow the corral should be dry enough to turn over and pull some muck out. Looking like it'll be a busy ranch week :) .
No sightings of Mr Wile-E C today. I don't expect any (but am always ready. It seems I see "him" every couple of weeks when I'm out with the sheep.
North Slope Salad Party.....
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Their ever helpful and present "waiter" .....
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Meadow Muncher.....
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Yummy yellow flowers on the south slope slow drive through ....
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SageHill

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Holy Moly - I haven't posted since Monday!!!
Been busy I guess, and not on my computer hardly either.
Lots of little stuff getting done around here. More work on the ranch road - which is now finished (until next year), got "stuff" relocated from various areas to a spot on the ranch, it's all pretty much organized and freed up a trailer that had palettes, and the main driveway at the house finally is 100% clear!
The weather has been pretty good. Cold mornngs (high 30s low 40s) and comfy afternoons - high 50s low 60s. We've had some wind - but nothing like other areas. Though when it blows it's cold - coming from the NE.
I'm out grazing again - as usual, and now well after a year STILL loving it. I'm also realizing that truly - and I knew this all along - my dog is the fence for rotational grazing of sorts. We are always in different areas - whichever is tastiest to the sheep - and it does change every day. In my mind I ~want to see the sheep all spread way apart and eating. But it's never happened, no matter how far off the dog is. That is life. They eat an area until either they or the dog decides an area needs a break. I've know this since the beginning of this .... if their heads are down and they are eating everything is as it should be. I ~think~ I'm the only one here doing it this way so I gather my info mostly on my own little epiphanies while I'm out there. They also mostly like grazing going UPHILL rather than down.
There is SO much going on, and being out there with them, watching, taking time, I learn so much.
This week - only one time to deal with the coyotes - two this morning - together. They seemed to be just passing through - rather than checking out of. Gave them some persuasion to get outa' Dodge fast. They did, and one with an "extra spurt of energy".
Got my seeds in the mail - time to plant. Already got some in, need to run to the mushroom farm and grab some of their "gold" to add to the other beds by the kitchen.
Strawberry season is upon us - that means it's time for jams -- next week or the week after I hope to put some up.
Peas (remember way back I had the mesh trash cans over them?) are now going great guns - yummmy. Avocados are almost at the beginning of the season.
Chickens started laying today --- two green eggs - yay.
Life is Good.

Can I eat this????
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Going out for breakfast...
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This restaurant will work. (large and small arenas in the background).
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The greens on the ridge are tasty.

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Ya' know - these yellow flowers are tasty too.
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Most of the grazing today was on both north and south slopes and a bit of the ridge.
I've been pulling up the wild cucumber. Last year I pulled A LOT - so far this year it
isn't as much. Hopefully I made a little dent with last year's effort. I know they grow from
a giant tuber - but I'm still hoping the tubers didn't get "fed" enough last year.
Time will tell, the battle continues.
 

SageHill

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I managed to get a lot in yesterday before the rain started. As usual, grazing was number one and done on the list. The clouds were amazing from a photographic standpoint (yeah that old photog in me screams sometimes). Of course we were spit upon quite a bit. But the cold/cool was great. Sheep were very happy on the south slopes - they did such a good job in some areas I could see their "mowing progress" :) .
With the clouds in the sky I couldn't help myself and took a ton of pics. I really should bring a big camera with me instead of the phone. But the phone does have some "portrait" feature that I played with. Kind'a cool in a geeky way.
Instinct tests gone done with occasional spits and drips from the clouds. Just a touch to offset the hay bill. 💵
I've been working with the pups and the sheep. The pups are doing well - I really should put more time into them. Typically around here training happens then something happens and trainees go from the frying pan into the fire. I hope I avoid that this time around. The last week or so I've been working with Zo (the pup who seriously copies what Obi does) on road work - he's doing pretty well. He works both wide and close along the sides. I think he's feeling out the "comfort zone". Eventually we'll get to grazing with him - I like that he works wide and can work close figuring out what is needed pretty much on his own - a big skill that is needed for the grazing.

Zo - giving road work a try.....
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At one point Auntie Barb made a break back for the barn for no apparent reason.
I wish I could have seen what actually happened,
the end result - Auntie Barb dutifully came back to the flock. Guess she learned that "the kid" has some of
Obi's skills!
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And those clouds yesterday .....
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The old wether ("Spot")
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SageHill

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How can it be Friday??!!!!
I've been out and about doing the normal things. Grazing sheep, teaching herding lessons, teaching detection lessons. training my dogs, tending the garden - just normal things.
Maybe it's Friday already because Monday was rain a whole half of an inch -- nice amount. Of course that brought with it the 'must drag arenas'. With all the previous rain I let them dry out until today - though I ~could have, probably should have dragged them yesterday.
Got a lot of things done today - grazed (of course), got all the sheep drenched. I used the 7' panels I used for a creep feeder and made a pen and got all the sheep in. Tight quarters (could fit a few more in hmmm! ;)) and went about drenching. It was pretty easy, not a drop of drench spilled and all got their dose. 👍 I'm sure you all do the same - but my little moment of brillance was to measure out a little more than I'd need and put it in a yogurt container (obviously no yogurt and clean).Load the drench gun, snap the lid back on, set it on a board outside of the little pen, dose a sheep, repeat. I thought about marking sheep as I did them - heck that would be too easy right???! So I started with saying a name or sort of name (i.e. trial guy), fat tail, etc and just kept adding a name to the string of names. Good practice for short term memory exercise :rolleyes::lol::lol:Next time I'll either white board names or mark them as I go. Once I was done they were rather POed at me. Took a bit for even the cracker lovers to come around - but of course we all know that crackers solve almost everything!
Cleaned up the stuff, marked the calendar and had lunch. Went back out and worked on the arenas.
Also this week I went down to my neighbor's with the goats. OMG - they are cute. She showed me her set up for milking - sweeeet. While I'm out in the morning grazing, she's milking. I went home with some goat's milk - ohhh love it - forgot just how much I love it. Dang - looked up health benefits and I love it even more. Also went home with soooo delish chevre.
We talked about the hay$$ and may go in together with the guy I'm getting mine from - that ~should split the delivery or close to it. Time will tell.
Next on the agenda is trimming hooves. Looking forward to seeing if the extra wide velcro strap will help when I use the deck chair.
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This stuff looks so pretty - but don't let it fool you - it's nasty yucky wild cucumber. I yank it out every time I see it. Not seeing as much as last year - thinking / hoping that all the yanking I did last year is having an effect! 🤞
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Sugarbush party ...
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