Monday, 10 October 2011

A Relaxing Weekend had by All

Having returned home from the frenetic excitement that is bull-selling week last Thursday evening, Friday was spent dispersing molasses to demanding bovines.  With the tank nearly empty, the molasses runs at dribble-pace into the trailer, stretching the job into a full day jaunt.  Having found many new babies on my rounds, Saturday morning before heading for Chabo and Bottle Tree, I bundled all and sundry into the ute to take them on baby-inspection rounds.

We welcomed nine little additions during our absence, all resulting from an embryo-transfer program conducted some nine months ago.

This little snoozer fairly confident in his hiding ability.  With neck outstretched he was sure we couldn't see him.

A poke from Matthew had him up, searching for Mama.  He's a pink-nosed, red polled bull calf ... apparently all the rage at the moment.  Of course, by the time he hits the sale ring, the flavour will have changed to green-nosed, triple horned bandicoots.  That's just how we roll.  About three paces behind the action!

We arrived at Chabo to find it looking an absolute picture.

Of the black and white variety. 

Hold the white.

The lack of grass showing why we find it necessary to shoe our horses up there.

This old girl played a fairly pivotal role in containing the fire to Chabo and protecting Bottle Tree.

The boy child, most keen to have a ride back to the Chabo shed with Dad.

What is it with boys and noisy toys?

And so while the boys busied themselves with mechanical pursuits, the girls and I checked on some cattle.  Many of these young heifers destined to grow out on the Chabo mountain, may have to wait for early storms to help pull some green pick through the blackened stones.  The four inches of rain we received just over a month ago probably means there will be enough subsoil moisture to send some green up even without further storms.  But with days heating up, we're looking forward to the rumble of thunder sometime soon.

With young stud cattle to weigh Sunday, Sal was flat out.

Thankfully slide gates also double as handy perches.

Sarah positioned herself as close to the crows nest as possible, her favourite position for drafting. 

For those unaware, the crows nest is a raised platform above the main drafting yard, whereby gates can be opened and closed with the use of steel rods attached to the gates, meaning a person is not required to be in the main drafting yard (the pound), thereby much safer, particularly when employing child labour.

{picture from earlier in the year, no coats required this weekend}

I'm yet to be allowed a turn in the crows nest, my expertise apparently required on ground level.

These maiden heifers were taken out to meet Bryson, their bull.  Although a few weeks earlier than we would normally put bulls out, it was convenient this weekend with several paddocks of cattle through the yards.

The horses are all back here at the moment, so mustering was done bike-back.

Fred the wonder-dog played his usual part of grumpy old know-it-all, especially when working with the kids.  He really does lord it all over them.  Won't listen to a word they say, heading in exactly the direction he believes the cattle should work.  Fortunately he really does often know best.

Having seen several of his mates head out to work over the weekend, this old coot shot me some rather contemptuous glances as we drove away Sunday evening.

Never mind old mate, your turn's coming. 

Matthew trucked home another seven bulls, destined for sale at Charters Towers come February.  It was obviously bothering him that I'd had three days break from feeding bulls morning and evening.

And so another weekend came to an end, home by 8 last night, tired, dirty children and a box of KFC for dinner! 



  1. Oh Fiona. Yet another fascinating post about a life so far removed from my suburban variety! I am learning so much about your life on the land - thanks so much for explaining everything so well. J x

  2. Yeah, but what about poor old Sharon? She had to do the flamin'concreting as well.

  3. why, thanks for your concern Old Nev! I have to say I feel positively exhausted after reading this post, after having a rather leisurely weekend attending bbq's and recovering from said attendance.(and Nev, I think I have been given - most tactfully - the sack from concreting. It could have been my whingeing, or the fact that I really wasn't that useful at all!)

    Fiona, shall I come to the Towers and wave around my hand to run up the bids on those bulls? ;-) although I do think I would rather save my money for the green nosed triple horned bandicoots. Sounds like they would cross well over our new brangus babies!

    ps. your crows nest looks far more user friendly than our cobbled together and at times exciting-to-use overhead draft. one of those things that really adds to matrimonal harmony (you have such a way with words)when drafing together.

  4. I would love to see more of your working corrals. I've seen a "crowsnest" only one time when I was young and not interested enough to pay attention to how it was built. Great photos as usual.

  5. Another beautiful post. Your images are lovely! Love the bike-back mustering shot!

  6. Lovely selection of shots - fascinated by your array of breeds. Brahman (obviously) and some Brangus and Charbray? Am I right? Great seeing your kiddos so involved... the best way out here, no?

  7. Your cattle look beautiful! Either you are a very patient photographer or they love to pose for the camera.



Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...