Sunday, 30 September 2012

Nice & Cosy !


The barn extension is nearly there.... just a few finer points to finish off.  I have the big door to trim and the sides to finish.  This is a photo of the boys and the new accommodation.  The original part of the barn appears to have become the toilet facility !!  The boys have opted to lie in the new part.  You can see where the original barn ended, at the poles, that are now the divide in the middle !

This is the girls today ... squabbling for the puddle ...Zullulah and Trienza are in mid .... puddle !  Whilst Zienna and Zimushka are waiting patiently.  Aymara is my oldest girl in the foreground...... she is now retired from breeding, she is one of my very first girls I bought all those years ago when we were starting out here in Zanzibah Land.

The girls and babies out today, the babies are growing up fast, can you spot little Zyisha (Dolly Mixture) she is nearly as big as Zodo who is in front of her.  The alpacas just love the puddle.

I think the new roomier barn gets the seal of approval from the boys.  We now have plenty room for everyone.

Thursday, 27 September 2012

Nearly There ....and just in time !


What a horrendous couple of days, we had no sooner managed to get the roof fixed on Sunday.  Then we have been battered by the wind and the rain along with most of the country.  Thankfully the boys had some where to go.  Only half of the side was re-positioned, but I don't think the boys were bothered.... they were all waiting at the gate on Monday tea-time wanting to come in.  I have one gate to fix on the right hand side of the barn and then it will be finished....

This was Monday before the torrential rain and wind arrived.  We had managed to board the front of the barn which is where my dad is standing.... this was a bit of a race against the rains towards the end, however this side is now complete.

Guess who .... as usual looking rather less than glamorous !  Having the extra room is great and the boys all ran in on Monday night, they were all really surprised at the extra room you could see the look on their faces.
This was what the barn looked like on Sunday, you can see where the old part meets the new part.  We are nearly there.... hopefully by the weekend the barn will be completed.  It will make a massive difference to us here, especially during the winter when some days are so bad the alpacas prefer to stay inside.

Sunday, 23 September 2012

Getting along nicely !

We all had Friday off, however today we have cracked on with the barn extension.  All the sides have been cut out and put to one side, ready for replacing on the new extended out poles. 

This is the view today up on the roof, we have had another lovely sunny day, yesterday we managed to fix the purlings and put the cross beams onto the roof ready for fixing the sheets today.

This is my mam the other day, in the directors chair !  It is her Birthday today .... 21 again !
We celebrated in style with another day to remember..... what a way to spend your Birthday !

The roof is nearly finished.  I have only got a slight fall on this roof as I have made it as high as possible, in order that I can get in with the tractor...

What a way to spend the day..... sleeping in the sun, there's something going wrong somewhere, at least Norka managed to wake up for a brief moment.

Tonight the roof is fixed and finished.  Just in time for the weather to make a change for the worse. 
We are forecast horrible weather reaching us tomorrow night.....I'm hoping by then we will have most of the sides fixed in place, I reckon that the boys will be in tomorrow night.... checking out their new slightly larger accommodation !!

Friday, 21 September 2012

Guess What ...we're Doing !!

Guess what we are doing .....

My mam and dad are here for a little holiday, time for a bit of an extension, this is the 4th extension and this one is for the Boys !!  I have decided to expand their winter barn, just in time before the real winter weather arrives.  This will be the LAST change to the wooden barn we started last year....

to say this building has evolved is a slight under statement, you can never have enough sheds....and unfortunately they're never big enough....well hopefully after this slightly small alteration....this one will be big enough for everyone to enjoy plenty of room through the winter....part of the sides have been removed in order to open up the barn, the telegraph poles have been concreted in and are currently setting.

Spot the work-force.... with a little extra help from a certain little helper, after this building is extended, it should be around 27ft by 20ft.  I'm hoping this will be big enough for us all to fit in ...for quite some time.
On the alpaca side of things, the babies are all growing up fine, little 'Dolly Mixture' (Zyisha) is catching up with the boys, she is doing really well after her difficult start. 
I am in the process of sourcing the 'bits and pieces' to set up the Centrifuge facility, I have sourced the syringes and hopefully I am in the process of finding the appropriate blood bags.  I hope to have these in stock here which will be handy if anyone might need them.
 Its early stages but I'm sure it will be all worth it in the end and be a great facility, I am really looking forward to having my first batch of plasma spun up and ready to go in the freezer !!

Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Centrifuge Facility Available

Some eagled eyed Blog readers, will have noticed that I have a little notice regarding an alpaca plasma facility now at the top of my Blog !!
 After a year of researching the opportunities regarding sourcing alpaca plasma in the North of Scotland and getting no-where.  I have decided to take the plunge and buy my own little Centrifuge.  This will mean, I can have the vet come and do an on site harvest of blood at my farm.  I can then spin up as much as I need.  This also means I will have an emergency supply of plasma on site.

I will be able to also offer this life saving facility to anyone who might need it in the area !
Last year, I had to use some plasma which was very kindly donated to me from Wellground Alpaca Stud, if I didn't have this option then my lovely little Zoretah might not be here.  This was the catalyst for me to actually do something about the lack of this facility near to me.  So sometimes you just have to stick your neck out and your own thing.  I believe that this machine will be a great investment, not necessarily a financial one, but more of an emergency solution to a potentially life threatening situation.  If the option is here to give plasma.... that is a much better option, than not to have the opportunity at all. 

It is always when you least expect it and in emergencies....with hindsight, the offer is a back up facility.  Obviously you never want to need it, but life will dictate that we just might oneday.  Better to try and be prepared for every eventuality, than not at all.

This is Zirrianna, this week, she is now on tablets, as I asked the vet if I might be able to have some, instead of her having injections all the time, she was getting quite crusty around her injection sites.  Her face is much improved, less crusty and her swelling under her eye is going down gradually.  We are hoping that after this months course of tablets, maybe she can have some surgery to correct her under eye swelling. 

Its a dogs life ....!!  there are two here .....Zonda with Jessie providing a very nice head rest. 

Tuesday, 11 September 2012

Working Boys !


This is some of the stud boys here ....Barnacre Duke on the left, Zeto light grey, Zanubis rose grey & Wellground Stravinsky.  It has been a busy day here today, the boys have been busy today.  We have had a break through today, after five attempts for Duke to finally get the idea...the penny eventually dropped. It was his last chance today to prove himself and join the rest of the boys who hold the title of Zanzibah Stud Males.

Wellground Vital Spark (front)  Wellground Stravinsky (middle)  & Barnacre Duke (rear)
This will be the first year that Duke and Stravinsky have worked !  Stravinsky already has one of my girls spitting off that will be very exciting indeed .  He has covered four girls here this year.  Duke has successfully had one romance ! Zanubis and Zeto have also had a couple of girlfriends and Dusty has once again had her regular guy, Zelqui, they appear to produce lovely little grey babies, so I'm keeping that the same .... until things change.

The boys out grazing today ... after a busy day. 

Zavia and Zazu ... having a moment.

Zazu ... he is growing up fast.

It has been a busy day here today, I have managed to catch up with the rest of my matings, I will have only one more to do in a few weeks time.  The last girl will be Salsa who has just had her baby last week.  I will check then with some spit-offs to see who is holding their pregnancies.... if  there are any who have not taken, then I will wait until Spring time next year  ... as it will be getting a bit late for
re matings.

Sunday, 9 September 2012

Tail Up & Under !!

This is a lovely sight .... Zyisha, tail up and underneath her mother .....feeding.  A relief after the difficult start.

It was red hot here yesterday, four little boys and Zoretah in the background, there is always one missing from the photo !

A view of the hill and the bales from the wood.  These bales have now been collected up as the weather is due to become more wet.  This means that the bales will sit out for a couple of weeks in rows, on a high point of the field and it makes collecting them much easier as you don't have to tramp across a wet field.

Niggy, Noggy and Norka ...he is piggy in the middle, this was us out today around the wood for a walk.

And finally, I had Prince Charming calling on Saturday night ... he was waiting for me on the steps to my house...... a lovely little toad !!
I'm still looking for my real Prince Charming !!! ....Thought I'd found him .... until he turned into a frog !!

Friday, 7 September 2012

Zanzibah Zyisha .....has arrived !!

Well after 345 days we have our eagerly awaited new arrival and it has not been plain sailing !
Early on Wednesday morning I could tell that Salsa had gone into labour, by 9.40am the new arrival was here, firstly a lovely little girl !! She is beautiful, this is Zeto's very first baby here.  She already has nickname .....she is called Dolly Mixture !  If we didn't have a tradition of naming our babies with a 'Z' then that's what I would call her . 
Her real name is Zanzibah Zyisha ........
Salsa delivered her without any problems, but after she was born the problems began .... Salsa would not let the baby any where near to feed.  She stood guard and stayed close, but would not entertain any attempt for the baby to feed.  I noticed that we were having a few issues around 11am, its a bit of a difficult call, you don't want to interfere but you have to if there is no sign of any chance of the mother allowing the baby to feed.  
I keep powdered colostrum and goats milk for cases of emergency.  Thankfully the baby was strong and had a good sucking ability.  Zyisha actually took around 50ml.  The vet was called and it was confirmed that Salsa didn't have allot of milk, she has been given an injection to help with that.  Throughout the day Salsa continued to reject the baby, I supplemented feeds every 3 hours up to midnight on Wednesday.  I decided not to feed during the night just in case things changed and the baby managed to feed from her mother.  I went to check at 7am and found that both mother and baby were in the right place, it looked like there might have been a little bit of feeding happening !
I decided to supplement a feed around midday and then turned all the girls and babies out into the little baby paddock for the afternoon.

If this wasn't enough to contend with, I was multi-tasking ... I had two fields cut on Sunday, one to be made into haylage and the hill was hoping to be made into hay.  So during Tuesday night the contractor turned up to bale the haylage, I had spent Tuesday afternoon rowing it up ready for them, they turned up at 10pm for me to bale it up.  I have managed to get 32 small 3ft round bales of lovely haylage..... this will be feed for my animals through the winter.

Salsa is keeping a close eye on her little baby, but would not let her feed .... Zazu is greeting the new arrival to the herd.

I have also been busy turning the hay on the hill, this was ready to be baled up on Wednesday, the day it all happened ......and what a day it turned out to be !  The field was eventually baled up in the afternoon as we had rain forecast for Thursday ..... collecting the outside bales to be wrapped as this will also be haylage, I spent all day carting and stacking hay ready for the contractor to come and wrap it up last night ......

This is a very nice sight ....haylage made and being wrapped ....job done !!  We were on all night until around 11pm .....
I have around 52 bales of haylage and in total have managed to get approx 87 bales from the two fields.  This is me now going to have a little bit of a break !  Well, actually I have to collect the remainder of the hay up off the field, sometime over the weekend.

Finally ........... I shall end with our new arrival .....she is definitely going to bring lots of colour here with her multi-colours.
Well this marks the end of the birthing season for us here this year.  I'd just like to say 
 ......... the Future is still .... Fine 'n' Fancy ..........
Here in Zanzibah Land !!

Monday, 3 September 2012

Guess What I'm Doing ... Part 2 !


Yes, you guessed it ...... phase 2 of the haymaking !  This is a view of the hill, this field is around 8 acres and was cut last night.  I have decided to go for it, after lots of pondering, humming and haring regarding the weather forecast on the Internet.  Not one forecast agreed with the other, but honestly after lots of pondering, this week looks the best one, out of the next two.

A brief photo last week of some of the girls, Zimushka and Zadi~Blanca watching Zonda in the garden.

Us, just finished the turning of the remainder of the 10 acre field.  This is about 4 acres which will be turned into haylage for my horses winter feed.  That's the plan, I'm hoping to have this baled up either tomorrow afternoon or Wednesday weather depending.  Then it will be wrapped and stored outside which is great as it means that I don't have to find a barn to keep it in.
A break from the norm !  Well everyone deserves a bit of play-time .... even me never mind Niggy, Noggy and Norka !!  Out for our evening wander last night.

This was the pond last week after torrential rain and flash flooding, it was so full the water breached the little dam that was made to keep the water away from the part which is yet to be dug.  The pond will resume sometime soon, when the contractors have a spare day or two after harvesting all the barley.

For some reason, quite a few regular readers missed the mention of Zirrianna and her on-going problem.  This is a photo of her last week.  She still has a long way to go as you can see.  This is turning out to be a persistent problem.  After skin biopsy's what she has is a deep chronic bacterial follicle infection.  The white is cream to try and help moisturise her skin.  This problem is a real nuisance, she has had to have her eye-lid stitched out, as it was causing her to have an ulcer on her eye.  Her treatment is still on going, a combination of Steroid and Baytril injections.  Its proving to be really stubborn to get rid of ..... but we are doing our best to try and get her cured.

Zirrianna on her better side ..... It just a complete mystery how this has happened or even what has caused it !
We are still waiting for the arrival of the last baby here.... we are 344 days and counting.  I'm sure this baby will arrive when its good and ready !