Why I Wear A Watch

Oh, what fun I had with yesterday's mystery post!
Today we return to the ebb and flow of farm life...
the rhythm that everyone counts on.

Of all the animals on the farm,
I believe the equines feel most secure when they are on a schedule.
There are certain things that they look forward to each day at certain times.
And believe me, if we deviate from the routine, they let us know!

I've been letting them out in the front pasture in the very early morning.
It is more comfortable for them to be out when
 it is cooler,
and before the flies get busy.

When I arrive back at the barn later in the morning,
they are ready to come in for their breakfast.
It is at this time that they get a pelleted vitamin and mineral chow.
(all of my equines put on weight quite easily and so they do not get a high calorie grain)

Every morning it's the same deal.
Everyone comes in except Red.
He is always the last one to the barn,
and usually requires a little round-up by Annie.

She takes her job quite seriously.... and although she sounds a little vicious,
she is all bark...no bite!

Ollie, who is already in the Littles' stall, eating,

gets bumped from his dish by Red.

Obviously horses can't do a higher level of reasoning,
or Red would realize that by bumping Ollie to the other bowl,
he is actually giving Ollie another full bowl, leaving a half-eaten bowl for himself.

Like I said....no high level reasoning there!
I am convinced that horses are driven by instinct, with a little emotion added for good measure.
Common sense and reasoning?

As soon as everyone has finished their chow,
fly masks are applied.
The horses seem to understand that fly masks are beneficial...
and they stand still and let me put them on.
However, by mid-afternoon, Ollie has usually removed his.
Like I said....no common sense.

Flies are problematic during the summer.
We make good use of our solar fly catchers all over the farm.
Fly masks and fly spray help as well.

For some strange reason, this summer Chloe has declared a moratorium on fly masks.

Each day I offer.
She declines.
I plead, cajole, bribe.
Still she declines.
I call in re-inforcements.
She declines vehemently.
I give up.

She spends the day shaking the flies off.

No common sense.

We have babies in the barn again this year.

A pair of barn swallows returns each year to this nest to raise their brood.

The hatchlings are growing quickly.

Judging from their size, they will soon be ready to begin their flying lessons.

Between food deliveries, Mama and Papa sit on the wire outside the barn...
guarding their family and warning anyone who comes to near.

They are especially wary of Moll cat and frequently dive-bomb her
 as she meanders around the barn.

The funny thing is...
Moll seems oblivious to them.
Or, perhaps she chooses to just ignore.


Jean Henry said…
What a cute story. Our neighbor had miniature donkeys, but when she passed away from cancer last year her husband gave them away. We miss seeing them on our walks. It was so nice to see the pics and hear about their antics. What function does the equines on your farm have?
colleen said…
I have to agree, yesterday's post was fun!! And today's post makes me wonder how long it takes to do one round of chores with all the extras that go with it like fly masks, cleaning stalls/ pens/ feed dishes. I know you are organized but I wouldn't have one round done before it would be time to start the next 😱. Then add all the gardening to it....
I love barn swallows. It's always fun to watch them nest.
This N That said…
I love barn swallows..They used to dive bomb me for bugs when I was mowing..Pretty birds but they robbed the blue birds nests that we had then..I guess they all do that on some level..
Chloe prefers flies to a cumbersome mask??Wonder why?? As you said "no common sense." Have a good evening..
The JR said…
Maybe you could show us your solar fly catchers. We live in Mississippi on 27 1/2 acres. The neighbors have cows, we have horses. They don't do anything to kill flies, but I'm constantly fighting them.