The following post is an archive of our GoFundMe campaign which
began in 2020.
Summertime finally seems to have arrived in Victoria – including the first really overly hot days. But especially after this rather cold and wet spring the sunshine and reasonably warmer temperatures feel great for anyone spending the days outside – four legged and two legged. It’s crazy how time just flies and the farm has now already been open for almost four months. During that time we had the pleasure to welcome many friends and regular visitors back to the farm, to meet new animal lovers and we’ve all enjoyed once again to share our life and work around the animals with lots of visitors. Many of you will have seen several new faces among the staff as our team of farm workers has grown considerably this season. We are very lucky that we have found these amazing coworkers to join our team, they are a great fit all around: They really care about the animals and the farm just as much as we all do, they work hard and are just fun to spend the long days with. And while to them it must feel like a million new tasks, names, details and procedures to learn, we can truly say that they are all giving their best and each of them adds their own talents and personal interests to help to make the farm an even better and more diverse place. At the same time I would also like to send a huge THANK YOU to all the experienced staff members who always support and guide their new coworkers wherever they can. They share their knowledge, passion and dedication with the new staff, always offering advice and a helping hand and we really all learn from each other. Our farm can only be run and succeed as a team effort – and I strongly feel that we are building a really great team. Thanks guys, you all rock!
And now of course here is some news directly from the animals: our newest farm resident is the little serama hen “Spotty” with her 7 chicks. It almost feels like momma-hen and the 7 dwarfs! Since mum is one of the smallest bantam chickens, her babies are very tiny. A few days before the start of the really hot weather they moved from their warm and sheltered glass enclosure to a bigger outside pen with little house included, and their new home offers a mix of sun and shade and plenty of space to roam and explore. They weave through the grass, imitate mum’s example to dig for bugs and other edibles, have a dust bath followed by a nap in the sun and afterwards are seen play fighting with each other – little energetic squeaky voices full on.
Our two little love doves have also started a family of their own and they have successfully hatched and raised two little “dovelings” (I know that is not a proper term, but it sounds too cute). The babies who were naked and pretty helpless at first have now almost reached the same size as their parents – just their heads are a little smaller and their beaks appear bigger. They are very tame and used to the staff and so far they allow us to pick them up and then they just sit on our hand.
At the end of June our two alpacas Osmond and Lacy had a really important day because it was time for their annual shearing appointment. This is always quite a big event for the alpacas and the staff. While we’ve accomplished this many times over the years with Osmond and we know what to expect and how to make it least stressful for him, for Lacy and us together it was a first this year. Lacy is very food oriented, but also very cautious and flighty towards humans and she prefers to be handled as little as possible. We don’t know much about Lacy’s life when she was young, but she can be easily scared and upset by humans when she feels that they get too close. I’m really happy to say that Lacy was on her best behaviour for her haircut and while she was stressed during the shearing our shearer is a very experienced, patient and gentle person. We all together took great care of Lacy and were very efficient so that it all just took very little time. Now, both of them are sporting short summer-like looks and they appear much skinnier and also much more comfortable on warm days. Hard to imagine how they must have been feeling carrying something equivalent to several additional winter coats all the time. They must feel so much lighter now!
Our goat herd has been growing, too, over the last several months, there have been 11 little baby goats born to join our big goat herd so far this year. The last two mums to welcome their babies were Aurora with her son Orion and her sister Cinderella with her baby girl Slipper. Just a few days ago, they finally ran in their first goat stampede and they bravely followed the rest of the herd and made it all the way to their new nighttime stall. Now, we are still waiting for our last two goats Rova and Macey to give birth. We are not entirely sure yet if they are really pregnant, some of our ladies can hide a pregnancy pretty long – especially if they already have a big belly from past baby stretch and a lot of good food. But we are hopeful and as always we are keeping a close eye on them to not miss any signs that something is about to happen. Most of the time our ladies are really good communicators and they will let us know in advance when it’s their time and that they like our help. We keep our fingers crossed that they don’t decide to give birth in the middle of the night (as we all value theirs and our sleep), but even more important we all wish for smooth and fairly easy births and strong, happy and healthy mums and babies.
There are many more animals I could talk about – we really have so many special farm residents. I would like to send my closing thoughts out to our great little lady Peanut Butter who just had her 31st birthday now in horse heaven: “Peanut Butter, best of friends, about two months have passed since you took your last walk over the rainbow bridge. We still ‘see’ your presence at the farm every day, we still miss you in everything we do and we will remember you forever. Happy Birthday, sweet girl.”
Hoping you all had a happy long weekend with your family and friends, enjoyed some time in the sunshine and stayed warm and cozy during the downpour.
Looking forward to seeing you all again at the farm: stop by to say hello and meet some old and new friends.
Stay safe, be happy and always carry a smile in your heart,