Saturday, 23 May 2009

A bit more than we bargained for.

Posted by Simon
Earlier this week I was asked by a friend if I could help him out with collecting 11 sheep as it would be easier to tow a full stock trailer with my 4x4. It also transpired that the person selling the sheep has a pig for sell - at a very reasonable price. So we are going halves on the pig (it will be heading for the freezer very soon) and for helping out we will get one of the lambs when it is ready to leave Mum.

I was going to have to make a pig shelter for the weaners when they arrive in a few weeks, but I decided I'd make it now so the pig we collected today has a shelter. The design is based on a pig ark and I'm quite pleased with it, although moving it proved a problem until the digger came to the rescue. The ark is now being used by 'Sausages' who seems to have taken to it quite well, despite re-arranging all the bedding we put in there for her. Women eh? Never happy with the decor until they have put their mark on it!!

Now I was only supposed to return home with just a pig. However ...... I also came home with "Chops" - a rejected lamb which has to be bottled fed AND, much to Rosie's surprise, a pair of Muscovy Ducks. Now, apparently, called Hilda and Harold - these will be used as breeding stock. Why to Rosie's surprise? Well I have been saying NO to ducks for ages but, come on, these were free. BUT if they ever get into my wildlife pond they will be 'Hilda à l'orange' and 'Peking Harold'!

Oh and Chops now has a Saariogate (surrogate) mother. Ahhhhh!


  1. : ) Fantastic. You'll never know the ducks are there ! Me jealous no..I long for muscovies.

  2. Yay Rosie has ducks!
    And all those animals destined for the freezer sound good too. We are collecting 1/2 a pig today (free range, organically raised) for our freezer. Were going to have our own but at the moment it's just as easy to buy this way (direct from farmer). Sadly most of the pork 'grown' in NZ is farmed intensively using pig 'crates', a horrible system. However we read a farmer who free ranges his pigs (Tamworths) is going to rent a local butchery and sell some of the meat there, hoorah!
    Best of luck with the animals.

  3. excellent - I like Muscovies too.. and they dont quack like other others... and are such characters..the one we had before used to perch on our back door (it was a stable door) and demand food.. or fly in and nick the cat food.
    lots of animals at your place now!

  4. One less than there should be though - Mr Fox got one of the chickens yesterday. My favourite - she had been renamed Fat Bird and always ran up to me (for food probably) when I was around. Seems a bit quiet without her :-(

  5. Muscovies are lovely - I've two pairs remaining (lost one pair to the fox); great characters, quite laid back; mine don;t often go on the pond itself, preferring a dunk in a bucket or bowl LOL The ducks go very broody, so watch out for that. Good eggs, too, great for cakes!



  6. Just come across your blog and shall spend some time over the next few days browsing. What an exciting adventure you are on and I wish you and your family well. I shall look forward to following your adventures!

  7. Mrs L - we are hoping Hilda will go broody - I really want some baby birds of some sort and none of the chickens is showing the slightest sign of any maternal instinct.

    Sian - welcome. I'll have a look at our blog later but now I must get to bed as I have to be up early to feed "Chops".

  8. Ducks are notorious mothers - really don't know how to look after little ducklings - but your hens may adopt them once born so you may be in luck!


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