Calving preparations and barn upgrades underway

I knew the cold weather was going to arrive! But along with the cool temperatures we are seeing the sun, so I am not complaining. Without a horrible wind it really doesn’t feel that bad. It looks like things are warmer by the weekend if the forecasters are correct.

I jammed in many meetings last week and still managed to do some calving preparations. As always something sidetracks me. The distraction was the increased flock of pigeons and how big of a mess they were leaving in my barn. There is a row of hay were they roost that the cows won’t even likely want to sleep on never mind eat. There is a small hole on the North end of the barn they like to come and go through. I decided it was time to climb up there and block it. I found a piece of material that would work, predrilled it so it would be easy and stuffed the drill in my jacket. I would climb up to the top of the barn and get rid of my very dirty friends. Well I got nervous and my wrist isn’t that strong so I had to wait for help. It is blocked now, and I had some very upset pigeons. They were flying around the barn looking for another entrance. I was hoping they would all fly into the board and croak but that didn’t happen. There is a small hole on the South end of the barn that smaller birds enter but they don’t leave near the mess. I didn’t see the pigeons for a couple of days and then on Sunday afternoon I spotted two smaller ones squeezing themselves through the little bird hole. Looks like I am going to have to find another helper….

In my barn I still have some old tie stanchions that I really like when we are training cattle to take to the Fair. I usually build a couple of pens in this area. I have purchased some feed panels that would work great for these pen areas but I am really torn on taking out these stanchions. It would be nice if I could figure out a way to do both, but I am just not that talented. I am very much under skilled when it comes to repair and construction work. I mean, I did manage to rebuild the manger that some heifers broke last fall! My mom don’t think I used strong enough boards, although they are the same size as before. They are not strong enough for the cattle, but they are not supposed to be walking on them either. I used a skill saw that ran off a DeWalt battery – I didn’t even know there was such a thing!

I plan to move my cows home on Saturday. I still have the windbreaks to set up and finish my little project inside the barn with the stanchions and of course the pigeon hole. My calving book is yet to be organized and about three other lists of jobs to tackle. I will get to them as long as I don’t keep running into these distractions.