See more of Clint's Photographs

12 November, 2010

Individuals in Montana, not the way you expect it. . .

For the last several weeks as we have driven down the Grove Creek Road toward Fishtail, I have noticed a calf in the same pasture as the neighbors sheep. Each time I passed, my curiosity caused me to look for the mother cow, which I never saw. Yesterday, I asked the nieghbors if they knew there was a calf in with the sheep, and if they did, where was it's mother. What I was told, is not what I expected. This was a "bum" calf, it had no mother. In addition to bottle feeding the calf, they decided to put it in with the sheep. They were hoping it would bond with the sheep and ultimately be the protector of the sheep, very similar to the role of a llama. The picture shows the competitors, the llama and the calf.
Come spring we will have to return to the pasture and check out the role of the calf as well as it's relationship with the llama. Sort of strange seeing a calf with no other cattle in a pasture with several hundred head of sheep and a llama.
As I have been working around the barn for the last several weeks, I have noticed a little bunny. Yes, it is quite small and very young. As I watched and observed it's actions, I believe it has found a home under the hay that we are storing for the horses. Recently, it has started to pose for me, I couldn't wait any longer, ran to the house and got my camera and zoom lens, not knowing how close it would allow me to get. This is hunting season, but this critter is too small for the hunter, but it is staying close to the barn to hide from something. and what would you expect to see in another one of the pastures as you drive toward Absarokee. You are probably guessing, sheep or cattle, wildlife could be deer, or perhaps some horses. Wrong. There is a pasture that has been full of sheep, every year for the last 19 years. There are no sheep in it today. This is one of 3 small burrows that is in control of the acreage. No signs of sheep. This guy and his buddies are about the size of the calf and definitely smaller than the llama.
As we all know, Thanksgiving is just 2 weeks away. I'm sure that you are already thinking about where you'll be enjoying the feast and what you'll be eating. Just as we are about to prepare for the big occassion, guess what reappears on the Circle B Bar T ranch? Answer, the turkeys. The flock is not as large in numbers as last year. I counted 15 in total, but they look very healthy. For those of you who like dark meat, no white meat, not even the breast, you should come to Stillwater County and take one of these beauties home for Thanksgiving. If you prefer white meat, ie: the breast, then continue your plan to purchase or grow locally.

09 November, 2010

An update from Marty & Clint

The winner of the Halloween costume award goes to Patrick McCarthy, our grandson who lives in Westport, CT. Patrick had just finished his football season in Westport and wanted to treat the neighbors with a Big Ten look. Go Bucks
When the family was here this summer, cousin Kate from Georgia fell in love with Johnny, one of our horses. When it came time to return to the southland, Kate had convinced Marty and as well as Kate's parents, that Johnny would look good at their stables. Kate and her father, Marque returned the weekend of November 5th for Kate to spend a few more days with Johnny. Looks like a great match up.
Just before Kate and her dad arrived, we observed the horses starring at the road. Was it Kate and her dad arriving to see Johnny? No, it was too early for them. Could it have been some type of critter? No, most of the critters are hiding as the Montana hunting season is now in full force. But it wasn't hunters either.
It was a neighbor taking their sheep down the Grove Creek Rd, moving them from one pasture to another. Do you suppose our horses were jealous that they were not participating in the drive?
Remember the photograph of the owl that I took last winter while I was cutting wood for the fireplace. Well, it's time to get more wood and I was at the same place cutting logs for the winter ahead. Just as I did, January 5th to be specific, I looked over my shoulder as I was heading for the house with some wood, and guess who I saw. Of course I didn't have my camera, so quickly to the house, grabbed my camera and returned to the Grove Creek. It was still there, but after I compared these phot0's with the ones I took in January, I believe it was a different owl. I looks smaller and not was colorful as the prior owl. Go to the January 5, 2010 posting for a comparison.
Has winter settled in Montana yet? Well, the first weekend in October in 2008 we had 42 inches of snow, the same weekend in 2009 we have 24 inches of snow, and this same weekend in 2010 it was 83 degrees, obviously, no snow. If you go to the October 9, 2009 posting you will see pictures from these 2 weekends. So what was it like last weekend when Kate and Marque were here. The sun was shining and the temperatures were in the mid-70's on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. It all changed yesterday. The weatherman predicted 12-18 inches of snow in the mountains, there would be no accumulation at our elevation as the ground was still warm. This picture confirms that the weatherman at least knew what he was forecasting. Our altitude of 4500 feet missed the snow, just one ridge away, the white stuff was accumulating and the mountains really got hit.
As most of you know by now, Emma and Baxter, 2 great dane puppies arrived about a month ago. By now they have settled in, take a morning walk to get the paper with Marty, Kenya, and I, are underfoot most of the time and can last 4 - 5 hours between bowel movements. They are gaining weight at the rate of almost a pound a day. Here they are. We got them winter blankets 3 weeks ago and they have almost outgrown them. Stay tuned for more adventures of Emma and Baxter.