Monday, March 16

lambing

A few weeks ago, Rebecca found a flyer for a farm just outside of Chicago. It was an open invitation to come "lambing" at the farm. Apparently, lambing is when you go to a place where there are lambs and then look at them, while an old man talks about how he removes their tails and castrates them with rubber bands. It was actually pretty fun, despite awareness of the bleak future of the male lambs, and especially the black ones, who are all destined for the kitchen table. The animals are funny to watch though:





When they want milk, the babies stand underneath a female sheep, and then ram their heads into her lower abdomen, insisting for the nipple.


They also had cows (turn the audio up for this one):



Of course there was a chicken coup as well. Rebecca has a thing for poultry, so she she was agog with this discovery:





We found a bucket of baby chicks as well. There was a young girl (besides Rebecca) there who was completely obsessed with holding the chicks. Reminds me of Lennie Small from "Of Mice and Men" or Elmyra from Animaniacs.



As the girl's parents were preparing to drag her away, we moved in for the cuteness:





I hope the volume is up so you can hear the buzz. I knew there'd be an apiary on the premises, and I had my moment of awe when we found the hives:

2 comments:

suzette said...

Well, that was a fun field trip! Why are the black ones destined for the table? :-( Your videos are too short! The cow munching reminds me of Al with her Doritos... and, one last thought, have they found out what is killing all the bees? I had heard that beekeepers were losing bees at an alarming rate last year....

Love ya both.

(jeremy) said...

The black sheep are "removed" from the gene pool, as black wool is difficult to dye, therefore undesirable. I still don't know why they remove their tails.

Colony collapse disorder has been attributed to a lot of things. Out of all the theories, I am inclined to agree with the people who think it is happening because of moving the hives thousands of miles multiple times per year. That, and killing the queen prematurely in an attempt to get more yield from the hive. The theory about cell phone waves disrupting the bees is appealing to my "anti-foolish-modernity" side for sure, but I don't know how valid it is.

You can read more about this on the save the bees facebook group that I am a member of.