Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Finally one more name

Well as I said on the blog the other day, my wife Ann always picks the names for our newborn cria.She has taken her time with the last two newborn, but has finally decided on a name for the female, Chase-End-Blossom, still waiting for the boys name but I am sure that will come in the next day or two will let you all know when she comes up with it, must go now as I have had my teabreak, speak soon.

Monday, 23 May 2011

Reading the Blogs

Good Evening Everyone,
I am so pleased I keep reading as many blogs as I can, it keeps me in touch with what is happening at all the Alpaca Farms everywhere in the country from Lands End to John of Groats.Having bread cattle for almost twenty years, and then actually getting into breeding Alpacas has totally changed my life.
When Ann and I first started breeding Alpacas, about six years ago I did not envisage where the journey would take us. well let me tell you, to wake up in the morning, like I do very early, normally about five, and walk my paddocks, feeding my girls and boys,makes me feel ecstatic, especially seeing the new cria snugglig up to their Mums, and actually coming over to me to say Hello.
I really feel upset and know many other Alpaca breeders must feel the same
about how TB has changed our lives in taking our lovely girls and boys to Alpaca Shows. I do know that Fleece Shows are being supported, but the thrill of taking your Alpaca into the ring, to be Judged, is amazing, especially if you win a rosette.
I do not have all the answers, because there are far more breeders out there, more experienced than myself, but looking at a fleece, which really is what Alpaca breeding is all about, or seeing the Alpaca in the show ring, I know which I prefer, seeing the Alpaca standing proud to be judged on Fleece, and Stature is the only way for me.We here at Chase-End -Alpacas are fully into Bio Secirity and will always put our herd first. That is why we have not shown any of our Alpacas at any shows for the last two years, even though we are in an TB free area.
I only hope in the very near future, that things will change, like they did with Foot and Mouth, and we can all get back to showing our Alpacas like we used to.I realise that may be some time away, but I can only hope it will be sooner than later, because I really think, without us Breeders showing our Alpacas, how will we get the interest we need from the outside world. I only hope I have explained how I feel properly to you all, and would love to hear any of your comments, about my feelings,
Good night to you all,

Sunday, 22 May 2011

Shearing over plus another cria born

We had the Shearers arrive Monday, Sam from Shearco was here and set up ready to go by eight. He has been here the last three years, but had changed his system completely from last year. He had two helpers with him, Jason and Chris, both were sheep shearers, Jason from Wyoming, was telling us how he was brought up on a cattle and sheep ranch, only 36000 acres,where they go off for days on horseback checking there stock, really cannot imagine having all that acreage to look after. Chris the other guy, was from New Zealand, and they both had the same idea, come to England, not only to shear Alpacas, but to see some of England, good on you boys I admire that.
Getting back to the shearing, Sam had set two sets of rope down so they had two Alpacas ready to Shear, finishing one and straight on to the next one, first time we had seen it done that way, but it worked a treat, congratulations on a very good job done,they were so attentive to our herd, nice to meet the boys.We stopped and had breakfast, only for 15 minutes and straight back on with the job.By twelve thirty they were packing there gear away, and ready to travel to the next Farm.During the shearing, Jason had said he was looking forward to shearing an Alpaca as he had only ever done sheep,I said to Sam give him a go, which they were both very pleased about , so Sam slowly talked him through it and showed him and the boy did good, well in my book, you all have to start somewhere.I am afraid there were some aching limbs on Tuesday, but the good thing about the Shearers coming you can time all your injections to suit, works a treat, believe you me.
Tuesday came and went so quickly, we were finishing off tidying around and trying to decide, did they look better with their Fleece on or off,always on for me without a doubt.Ann my wife had noticed our Bazul, walking the fence line, and said to me I think she is just about ready, but as we Alpaca breeders all know, girls will be girls and have them when they are ready, needless to say nothing happened on Wednesday. Now we new Thursday morning with Basul patrolling the fence line again, that she would not be long, and sure enough about 10-45 she give birth to a little boy,his sire being Chase-End-Ice Warrior, he has now given us one of each a female and male cria, these are his first two cria, so well done to him.
Well that is my good bit of news this week,I have not done a lot today, but I somehow think I better make a start, or Anns list of jobs, will only get longer, only joking love, by the way names have not been chosen as yet, that is my wifes department, so come on love get cracking,Bye for now, speak to you all soon,

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

What a week

Good morning all,
Well what a week it has been, first of all we had arranged to go to Easterwood Alpacas last weekend and stay over, to collect Ice Cool Lad, well owning Alpacas does not allways allow you to do want you want to do.Betsy was overdue her cria so my wife Ann decided to stay home just in case.Off I went to Berkshire to meet our good old friends Jeff and Sheila, and spend some time with them, all Alpaca talk,looking at their lovely herd, and totally relaxing. I stayed overnight at a lovely hotel. which they had arranged, through there daughter who works there a lot of thanks to them for that.I must say they have worked so hard, since moving on to their property, it really looks so nice loved the flower beds Jeff.
Monday soon came and it was time to load ICL up and head home to Essex, still Betsy was hanging on, typical female.Arriving home we settled ICL into his paddock, and got straight to work with the normal everyday jobs on the farm. It has been quite an eventfull week, getting ready for the shearers, having visitors to the farm, so I was pretty happy when the weekend arrived. Sunday came,I was about at five as I am an early person, checking the birthing paddock, still no change, all quiet on the western front, as the saying goes. I had just settled down for a cuppa, when Ann came through, looked out of the window, and said we have a cria just born, she had not taken ten minutes to give birth. We dashed out to see a lovely sparkling white female cria, the waiting had been worth it. She is the first cria born to our stud,Chase-End-Ice-Warrior and a cracker she is too,we will wait and see, as we breeders all do.
Better get out and do some chores or the day will pass by,speak soon,

Saturday, 30 April 2011

Chase-End- Prince William

Good Morning everyone,
and what a lovely one it is too, hope everyone enjoyed yesterday the Wedding being the highlight of the day, well it was not our only highlight. We had a really pleasant surprise, Ann and my daughter Sharon were watching the big event, I was at the other end of the farm cutting some weeds down,when I got the call, fancy a cuppa, oh and by the way Jude is giving birth.
Racing down to the birthing paddock to see the most beautiful white cria, standing so proud by his Mother, after doing all the neccesary jobs to him, to make sure he was fine, which he was, it was not hard to select a name for him, Chase-End-Prince-William, He is sired by Ice Cool Lad, and he looks a stunner.
Well like his namesake, maybe this Boy can go far, Let us hope so. Must go now as I have had my break this morning, and time to get back to work. Speak to you all soon,

Monday, 25 April 2011

Work Work and more Work we love it

Good Evening to you all,
what a weekend it has been,there is and old saying, not enough hours in the day, well how true can that be. We have been awake early every morning, by the way that is normal for us,we generally do the quite jobs first, as we have a few neighbours, and we try not to disturb them with any noisy jobs always leaving them to later.The grass has started growing but alas so has all the weeds. Today the tractor has worked overtime,it was so hot sitting on there at one point, after cutting four paddocks, I decided to cool down, so me and Jess my collie had five minutes under the hose, how lovely it was to.The place is looking a lot nicer tonight.
We have got Ice Cool Lads paddock ready, as he has some important work in front of him when he arrives back from Easterwood Alpacas, Jeff and Sheila are our co owners with ICL. We also have Ice Cool Warrior who is ready to start mating this year, he is ICL offspring, and what a lovely boy he has turned out to be an absolute double of his old Dad,I think he could be better, cannot wait to see what the future brings for him.We actually sat and had breakfast again this morning on the veranda, overlooking the paddocks watching the Alpacas basking in the Sun and thought Work Work and more Work, what a lovely position to be in.
Well it is nearly half past seven, and Ann has called me for my dinner so speak to you all soon,

Tuesday, 12 April 2011

Chasing the Girls

Hi Everybody,
Well as the Title suggests, Monday was Chasing-The-Girls-Day.It all started on Sunday,we had heard about a chicken auction close by, so off we went to buy a few more chickens, which we did. brought them home, only four of them, and slowly let them into the paddock with our other four chickens, all seemed fine, they eyed each other up and down, circled each other, it was just like the O-K- Corral,when was it going to kick off.All seemed well for a while but then the three cria in the paddock started,chasing the new chickens every where, it is amazing how they all feel Alpacas and Chickens included when someone new invades their space. we eventually got them all bedded down for the night, thinking what a good job we had done.
Monday morning came, and we let the chickens out, All Hell broke loose the Cria were chasing them our four chickens were chasing them, they quickly fled in all directions,which ended in Ann, Sharon, and myself trying to gather them in. Around two hours later we managed to achieve that, sitting down to a nice cup of tea I turned to my wife Ann, and said pet it is many years since I was Chasing the Girls we both looked at each other and laughed.
Just thought I would let you all know about my Chasing The Girls Day.
Bye for now Chase-End-Joe.

Sunday, 27 March 2011

A bit nippy

Good morning everyone,
well we cannot complain about the weather this last week, it has been lovely here in Essex, but I must admit today is nippy, there is a cold wind blowing today.
Never mind it is better than rain and it will be lighter tonight, with the clocks going forward, gives us a much better chance to get all the jobs done here on the farm.It is nice to see the grass starting to grow, but it does mean another job to do,cutting it. Mind we are lucky in one respect, the Alpacas do keep the grass nice and short in the paddocks and surrounding areas where we can let them into.
It is time for me to start and do all my repair work to my fences, the ground is still soft enough, to put any new posts in,and I have to build another field shelter,as a paddock I normally use only for grazing is going to be, for the pregnant mums, when they are ready to give birth.I do love that time of year when you see the new cria been born.
My wife Ann is off to the garden centre today, time for planting, which she knows quite a bit about[ ME ] I just cut the grass. There is a story about that, which I will tell you about in the next blog.
Well time to get back out and start again all this jabbering will get me no where, so bye for now,

Tuesday, 22 March 2011

Grass is growing

Well would you believe it,
had to dig the old lawnmower out today,started first time and off I went.To be perfectly honest I was only going to cut the grass at our Farm entrance, but the sun was shining, and I got carried away, decided to mow the lawn as well, and then another patch, places where the Alpacas cannot go.Did not realise how long I had spent on it all, until Ann told me it was nearly five-o-clock.Thought I would finish up, well my body was telling me to do so, not so young as we used to be,[laugh].Had a lovely cuppa and now it is time to have a nice stroll with Jess my collie and check all the Alpacas are okay. Just thought would do my blog while having a break.
We are forecast some nice weather this week in Essex, so it does help when you have a bit of sunshine, really makes you want to get stuck in, oh think I have said the wrong thing, when Ann reads this she will be getting her little black book out, and telling me all the jobs she wants doing,great being an Alpaca farmer, would not have it any other way, speak to you all soon,

Wednesday, 16 March 2011

The Last of our Hay

It sure seems to have been a long winter, I realise it is not over yet, but at least we know there is not such a long way to go. We used the last of our own hay today, so we will have to buy some new hay in, picking it up Thursday as it goes, five pound fifty a bale, let us hope we have a lot more rain at the right time this year, for those of us who grow our own.
Ann and myself were gutted we missed the Futurity, but due to circumstances beyond our control, we were unable to make it. Missed seeing all the friends we have made, as it gives us all a chance for a good old Alpaca natter, but we know we shall catch up with some of them at the Alpacas shows this year.
Had a nice chat with Jeff Easter yesterday, he and his lovely wife Sheila, own a half share with ourselves in ICE-COOL-LAD,who has produced some wonderful Alpacas for us both over the last few years, really nice talking to you mate, look forward to seeing you both soon.
Well it is a short one today folks, speak to you all soon,
Bye for now,

Monday, 14 March 2011

What a Lovely Day we have had

Well it has been a good start to the week, first of all I was standing on the decking this morning having a cuppa like I usually do, watching three six month old cria racing around their paddock, and then all of a sudden going into pronking mode. This absolutely facinates me and is very relaxing to watch, pronking by the way is when the Alpaca brings all of its feet off the ground at the same time.They continued this for about fifteem minutes, so relaxing to watch,I did not want them to stop.
Then it was time to clean their paddock,because they are only young they were following me around, still a bit unsure of you as they only came away from there Mums two weeks ago, but as the time goes on they will get better, they are following the pink Camelibra bucket everywhere, by the way Pink is my wife Anns favourite colour. I then went on to give all the Herd their breakfast which as always gets you plenty of cuddles and kisses, so inquisitive are Alpacas, we love them, after finishing my chores, I actually had a well deserved rest and took my good lady, off shopping for a few hours, leaving my daughter Sharon in charge, making it a Lovely Day, Speak to you all soon,
Chase- End- Joe.

Tuesday, 8 March 2011

Sunshine makes us Happy

Well it has been a long wet and cold winter, but let us hope we are near to the end of it.I was about very early this morning, it was still dark around four this morning, as it happens I am always about early, there was low lying fog on the fields and it was very frosty,I sat with a cup of tea looking out of the window watching mother nature take her course. As the time moved on the fog began to lift, and at six thirty I was letting the chickens out, by seven the sun was appearing over the rooftops and it gave me a bit of a spring in my step.I was feeding the Alpacas their Camelibra and filling all hay racks up, when it suddenly dawned on me what such a beautiful day this was going to be.As I was walking back up to the house, with my collie Jess by my side,I had this lovely feeling, Sunshine does make you feel happy.
Speak to you all soon,
Chase- End-Joe.