Monday, 2 September 2013

The Grass is Down.

All the grass is down - all seven fields.   The weather is sunny and windy and we are just hoping that it stays like this all week so that the farmer can arrange for a contractor to come in and bale up the grass and wrap it.    The pieces of machinery necessary for these operations mean that it is never worth us buying such equipment - it is far too costly - and it is much easier for us to get somebody in to do the job for us.

So tomorrow will be spent constantly shaking up the grass to let the air in and dry it thoroughly so that it will be ready for baling on Wednesday - weather permitting.   The next job is for the farmer to find a contractor to do it for him.   I am already worrying about him finding somebody (!!) but he is not going to bother looking until tomorrow morning.   Meanwhile he has gone off with a plastic bag to collect some rather large blackberries which were ripe in the hedge.   He has not taken Tess with him - there are now so many rabbits with myxamatosis in the fields that they are a hazard.   It is so upsetting to see these blind and almost dead rabbits stumbling about.   If the farmer sees one then he kills it quickly and humanely - but I am afraid I cannot do that - I turn away.   I am ashamed to admit it, but I really don't know how to go about killing a rabbit, so I have to leave it to suffer longer.   The people who introduced this cruel disease should have been made to suffer it themselves I sometimes think.   By all means shoot rabbits if and when they become a pest in the fields - but this suffering is never justified how ever big a pest they become.

As for the badger question - I stay on the sidelines I am afraid.  Again it is a case of not wishing to get involved.   I can see both sides of the problem - I don't think we should ever interfere with nature and try to upset the balance and I do appreciate how upsetting it is for farmers to lose cows - often one of which they are particularly fond.   They do have favourites you know.
 

11 comments:

Pondside said...

I've just had a lovely catch-up, Pat. Like you, I'm glad that we are, so far, to stay out of Syria. Of course, things change in an instant and we could find our young people kitting out for the desert again.

Leilani Lee said...

Ranchers in the American plains and down into Mexico decided the prairie dog burrows were causing too many broken legs and so they began eradicating them. Turns out in Mexico at least, the prairie dog was vital to maintaining the grassland. Without it, the grass disappeared and desert took over. Hope killing the badgers to eliminate the TB does not have unintended consequences for you folks

Terry and Linda said...

I can't kill either. I tell myself I hope I'm left to die 'naturally' when my time comes. I know I'm being a baby, but I just can't harm them any further.

Linda
http://coloradofarmlife.wordpress.com
http://deltacountyhistoricalsociety.wordpress.com

Pam said...

Wombats here Pat - and they are such delightfully bumbling harmless creatures. Farmers are blowing up wombat burrows in the hope of eradication. I find it very sad.
Can't something be done to eradicate the T.B. rather than the badgers? I've never seen a badger or mole - creatures quintessentially English to an Aussie.

Titus said...

All the best, I think it's set fair and getting warmer.

Killing animals shouldn't be easy; I think there's a lot of value in realising that.

Helsie said...

I understand your problem completely with killing any animal however the introduction of rabbits caused such destruction to the Australian landscape the mixi was a wondeful ( if you can use that word ) saviour. It is the introduced species that are the problem and I guess that includes cows and sheep ( here anyway) as well as rabbits, camels, foxes,etc.
Very sad to read the comment about wombats.

Jinksy said...

I wonder whether you watched the BBC's recent 'Burrowers' series? Their home made rabbit warren was fascinating...

Gwil W said...

I remember my dad being shocked by the numbers of dead rabbits lying on the roads in Anglesey. This was in the 1950's when 95% of Britain's wild rabbits died. According to Wiki the survival rate of infected rabbits in the UK is about 35% as they have developed some resistance. In the 1950's it was 0%.

Em Parkinson said...

Not many farmers round here do it themselves either Pat and I remember my friends that do telling me they get loads of phone calls on the same day asking them to come and do it for others. So much so, they gave up contracting a couple of years ago!

Isn't it amazing how those baked brown fields are miraculously green again?

Rachel said...

Pass.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Your replies are so interesting - thank you for joining in. So far, so good and the contractors are coming in the morning. Lovely smell of cut grass everywhere as the farmer opposite is cutting too. Just like the smell when you mow the lawn only more so! Thanks for calling.