I had a feeling about Poppy yesterday. Her tail was up and she seemed more agitated/excitable than normal – if that were possible. We went for a walk in the morning and again in the afternoon. And late in the evening it seemed to me that she was displaying nesting behaviour. Or maybe she knew a cold night was coming.
She was drinking a lot of water and was very hungry. But she is always hungry, a sows diet is pretty lean. She supplements it with grass.
But there is no milk down yet. The babies are still very active. And she does not look that uncomfortable. I guess she was just being Hop and Pop Poppy. So I am still waiting. I stayed up for a while last night then crept out to the barn (though I must sound like a train to her, with her head to the ground listening) and she was laid on her belly fast asleep (with one eye open). She often sleeps on her belly like a dog, head on her hocks, when they are ready to farrow they lie on their sides. No nest. Her second date is within the week – I need to find the diary out and have a look but I have mislaid my diary for the moment – I really need to do a clean up.
My once a day milking cows are doing well. The big milking bucket sprung a leak so I am using my tiny emergency bucket, this is fine for Del but with Lady A I have to stop milking two thirds of way through and empty the bucket then back on with the cups and milk the last little bit. She does not seem to mind though. They both have to be dry by the day before Christmas so I can go and have Christmas with my son in Canada. There is plenty of time yet.
In two weeks we will blood test both of them to see if I will be milking next year.
This morning I woke up to Poppy bashing at her door with her nose roaring to be let out- she hates it when I shut it – now she is back in her field getting up to mischief.
I hope you have a lovely day
It’s difficult to wait and wonder about birthings. Farmers have so much time and energy built in to these events. I think we spend half the year planning and half the year watching and waiting!
Yes! Mice and Men, etc c
Poppy definitely looks like it will be soon. She looks like a Pointer (dog) in that picture, aside from her tail being curled. Good luck to both of you 🙂
Yes – she certainly likes to pose! c
Oh how exciting–Christmas in Canada! Do you ski, Cecilia?
No. I have never skiied, I grew up on a beach. But I love the mountains.
She’ll just go and surprise you at the most unexpected moment!
This week would be a good one as it is still warm – c
Cecilia, I had an idea on how you can sell your life stock and veggies to make some money. Chicago has a lot of fancy restaurants and the newest trend is is farm to fork where restaurants buy directly from the farmer . You could sell your pig meat and chicken directly to them. This is done here in California. When I was at a blogging conference in Sacramento many chefs got their meat directly from the farmer and were proud to talk about it. It’s an idea !
It is a great idea but I would need LOTS of pork and vegetables all year round I can’t just sell to them when I have a few extra – plus it costs HUNDREDS to feed them up to market weight – but I do have a small restaurant in the works – we will see c
Sometimes they prefer seasonal products and if it is a well known and successful restaurant it will front you the money. A good chef would love to get his hands on your eggs, chickens and meat.
Mornin! My big milk bucket (think it’s the same as yours that I’ve seen) also sprung a leak…actually lots. I used caulking — 3 tubes — over a day or so to stop it – it was around the part where the bottom is attached — has worked pretty well so far but leaks just a little — irritates me big time that it happened – I could only find one for $160 or so to replace it and I’m too cheap at this point. I have to have along a second bucket because I can hardly lift just the one to pour unless I divide it up — milking two cows also. Good luck with Poppy babies!
They do get heavy – mine has broken right below the handle – not repairable sadly as the weight of the handle is lifting it apart each time and yes it is HEAVY! Like you I don’t want to invest in a new one at this stage of the season and as we are having a bad run with the breeding this year I am not sure about the milking next year..
I love reading your blog, it reminds me so much of my childhood on our farm, although we never had pigs, we were beef, sheep and arable, but we did have two house cows for milk for the house, they were called Buttercup and Daisy, a Jersey and a Guernsey. Cant wait to hear news of Poppy, I would be out there checking on her non stop too!
Poppy will pop when she is good and ready, it seems!
Not sure if you saw my bad news, but I shared some good news too.
I went to have a read and i am so sorry – it is awful when you lose a dear cat.. your other cats are beyond beautiful but as you say nothing will replace Spot. I hope your days get better. c
Another time when it would be very handy if animals could talk. “Are your babies coming, Poppy?” “No, Miss C, I’m just feeling a bit restive and want to fling myself around a bit…”
Could you put a large garbage bag inside your big bucket as a temporary measure, till you can find and fix the hole with a silicone sealer?
This is a milking bucket – it needs to be sealed for the vacuum pump to work – a rubbish bag would leak air all over the place – my little bucket is just fine.. I don’t mind
Poppy is such a character! I hope she is as attentive and gentle a mother this time around as she was last.
I hope so too but she is still so jumpy I just breathe in the barn and she leaps up!
Hopefully, this is our Willow’s last heat cycle. She is so terrible when she is in heat- bashing her living quarters, pushing at the fence,pacing along the fence line, making huffing and puffing noises. Vincent is visiting another sweet sow as of yesterday but by this time next month , he will be back home with us. I’m sure Willow can’t wait . I know I can’ t!
The fences sure do suffer when the girls are in heat – mine will go to the boar in November, late, I am away in February so no babies allowed!
Those mamas are lucky to have such a considerate midwife as you.
Sorry, Celi! You won’t mind if a have a soft laugh, will you 🙂 ? Poppy simply knows it is HER turn of fame and is milking it for all it’s worth! ‘Miss C : why am I not on the cover of ‘Piggies Monthly’? Look at how beautiful I am” !!! You are Poppy, and the pain will soon be over . . .
Looking at Poppy’s udder it looks like she thinks she has another little army on the way 🙂 Laura
Lady Poppy is keeping you on your toes.
Have a beautiful day.
🙂 Mandy xo
Will look forward to you coming to Alberta again! Come ready for snow as we already have had snow! It snowed most of this weekend all over the province. This is early even for us! Take care and enjoy your new piglets
Excellent because I am coming for Christmas this year! Hopefully I am assured a white christmas! Remind me to take my insulated gumboots – for some reason I left them at home last time! c