In the process of becoming both EU and PCAS accredited, we have started 'reading' all NLIS tags on property, and will then reconcile these tags with the national database, ensuring all tags currently linked to our property are either in an animal or in a box waiting to go in the next round of branded calves.
With three PICS (Property Identification Codes) under our control, there just may have been the odd occasion where cattle were moved between properties without the database being notified of said movement. Highly unlikely, but just perhaps on the odd occasion. "Did you scan those cattle when you loaded/unloaded them"? "No, I thought you did". "Was I driving the truck"? "No, but that was your job". Or words to that effect.
We also started preg-testing.
Check out that double-plaited photo-bombing devil.
My favourite old girl 'Dapples' didn't let me down, she'll mother another come end of year.
The early morning fog drifted in and out Sunday morning, highlighting cobwebs and dampening jeans hems.
The littlest cowgirl donned spurs for the first time in an effort to awaken her old pony.
It seems such a short time ago, the running of horses, catching kids' ponies, saddling them, hoisting small children into saddles, leading some, heart in mouth as you let others go it alone, cajoling, calling, issuing instructions, urging them on, wondering if it will ever become easier, until one day it does.
There is so much joy riding out with the kids. Animated discussions ensue on everything from our current dismal performance with footy tipping, through to assignments due, and planning for school holidays, only a few short weeks away. Without instruction, kids displayed some great cattle handling skills this weekend. They have become aware of the 'hot spots' whilst mustering, those places where pesky cows and cheeky weaners might like to show some non-conforming tendencies. Hurrying to place myself at a creek where trouble might ensue, I was delighted to find Sarah already in position and turning some adventurous cows back to where they should have been.
In the past fortnight, all four have mastered mounting unassisted. Bravo. Sarah's big black Bob standing statue-like as she drags herself up his side. He would dance around me like a three year old as I tried to mount, yet has become angelic for Sarah.
My ugly old brute Warrior and I are bonding more with every ride. Quite the character, he sees the need to have a little crow-hop on the first occasion every day when kicked into a canter. The kids find it rather amusing. I'm starting to see the funny side.
Saddles were greased by the child labour force while Dad and I drafted.
A full weekend proving nearly too much for some. Next weekend we're fortunate enough to enjoy a four day weekend, show holiday Friday, Queen's Birthday Monday. Looking forward to a weekend at home.