Christmas Bells

Christmas Bells
Christmas Bells - Blandfordia nobilis

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Kim and Peter's - more cows and calves

My friends Kim and Peter have some "Belted Galloway" cattle, otherwise facetiously known as "designer handbags". They are lovely cattle, nicely plump and with a very gentle nature. I showed one of these giving birth, last week.

Yesterday, I went back and Kim showed me several more new calves, including one brand new calf. Some have their ear tags now, but not this little guy - not yet, anyway. He was born over the weekend. The ear tag issue has probably been remedied today.
The calves were very inquisitive, but the Mums were more wary (for the sake of their calves), but no trouble occurred.
One of the Mums, a very large cow, with the "dun" colouration, was concerned that her calf was likely to get left behind.

"Where are you?"
He actually stood some chance of getting lost - in the amazing growth of grass in the paddock. But Mum was looking out for him, as you can see (above). Please, no complaints from my Victorian colleagues about the length of grass in the field. I cannot help it - it rains here, it is good soil, and anyway, I don't own these cattle, or the paddocks - so "please don't shoot the messenger" - me. I do hope you get some rain soon, though.

"Here I come, Mum"
This cow, a relatively small one, is an interesting blend of red and black, but still with the distinctive "belting" across her middle. She is suckling a very young calf, which is the traditional black and white colouring of the "Belted Galloways".
Elsewhere on the property, life was getting on as normal.

A pair of Weevils were trying to make their own babies. They were on a young Casuarina tree which had been ring-barked by some feral deer.
Here is a closer shot of one of the Weevils. It has dark brown freckles all over its body, and a very fine set of Antennae, which in classic Weevil fashion pop out of the side of the large proboscis (or "rostrum")
The Wombats, knowing that this is Sutton Forest, after all, have built their own elaborate "Two car garage" burrow. And down by the dam, a Black-fronted Dotterel (Elseyornis melanops) was doing a little dance in the water's edge. I watched this little guy run backwards and forwards along the edge of the water for many minutes. It was busy feeding. There was another of these bird across the dam, but they were not inter-acting in any obvious way.These small "waders" have a general preference for inland (fresh water) rivers and wetlands, and have taken to dams quite well. It is nicely marked, and the red eye ring is even visible (just) if you click on the image, to enlarge it.

In a few days I shall publish some of the photos of the flowers in Kim's garden.


Duncan said...

Lovely picture of the BFD Denis, you caught it nicely.

Denis Wilson said...

Thanks Duncan
I appreciate the comment. (I was happy with it). I will not say how many discards there were, but that one was a "keeper".

Mosura said...

Love the Dotterel shot!

The Belid weevils are fascinating too.

Denis Wilson said...

Thanks Mosura
Yes, as I have already said, I was happy with the Dotterel shot.
I was lazy last night, and did not track down an ID on the Weevils. Thanks, I shall follow up on "Belid" Weevils.