Sunday, June 26, 2011

Cate Goedert: Lawnmowers of the Southwest

Rocky is a lovable big bear of a dog, caught here looking quite at home on the job...
Check out this blog by local Eldorado resident Cate Goedert!
Cate is a talented artist and is now safer from fire thanks to the Horned Locust Team.

Cate Goedert: Lawnmowers of the Southwest: "The Southwest is in flames. I can see plumes of smoke just on the other side of the mountains from the Pacheco fire and whenever the winds c..."

Monday, June 20, 2011

Happy Birthday!

Today is dad's birthday!

Thank you for helping me become the person I am, for encouraging me, for supporting me, and for making me laugh, an important habit. It has been quite the adventure herding goats in Eldorado together; eating yards, and land both large and small.

I am glad to have your company and partnership in this brave new world..

Friday, June 17, 2011

A Grateful Community

We did a yard yesterday which was very small and narrow with lots of trees to fence out. We took just a trailer load to the yard of the goats most into hopping in. They are getting hip to the trailer load game. This means a mere 56 of the crew were lucky enough to go to work. The others had to wait till we were done to go out altogether in the greenbelt.

At first there was the usual excitement and exuberant exploring, then they were a bit concerned- calling for munching buddies which hadn't made the cut. After awhile they settled down to eating with the example of the calm grazing horses which came just for the grass detail.

The home we worked at was one of the most peaceful in itself that we have spent goat time at. The courtyards had a very nice layout with lovely trees and bushes as well as tasteful statues and inset tile scenes in the walls. The backyard was especially calming with its Creeping Thyme lawns and rosemary and- all types of plants and trees and bushes.

At the end of the day the goats were given the Russian Olives to trim up. They did with gusto! A favorite of the goats for sure. Afterwards when gathering the fence back up after the goats were driven home, dad pruned the trees lightening their load and setting them on their way to being shade trees. Mark meanwhile gathered the trimmings for the goats to finish up. We were rewarded for the extra trimming with heartfelt thanks and to my hardworking dad a few hugs from our patron, Elaine.

The appreciation we receive from folks every day is amazing. It is heartening and certainly very rewarding to be doing work which we feel is good for all involved including the environment and the goats. The horses and dogs are working for a purpose which is the kind of work we all hope for which satisfies the need to please which is so strong in social creatures.

The few negative and unhappy people we encounter are indeed very strong in their own right. But these are so far and few between (and seem to have a hard time regardless of goats crossing the road or protective dogs greeting them or goats crossing the usually invisible border into their land from the greenbelt) that they can't be taken too close to the heart. The dozens of glowing faces we light up every day outshines them as light fills up a dark room.

Vegetation management within the community of Eldorado is intense and a lot of work, but the support and enthusiasm we are infused with by the residents here makes it a rewarding way of life.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Goats Eat Weeds

Doonie enjoys a free day in the Greenbelt. 
She is my constant companion working the goats and spends few days on her own like this... 
especially of late since Chopo has been on leave for his barbed wire cut.
But now that he is back in rotation I have been enjoying his spunk- he loves to work as do all the horses.

Goats still mob cholla for old seed pods and dead branches. 
They have become quite adept at chewing and swallowing these pointy pads.

Chopo looks eagerly ahead to Doonie and camp at the end of the goatwalk.

Doonie meanwhile looks eagerly at the green grass along the road, requiring a little incentive to leave it.

Another day in another yard.
This one with no commute.
Goats enjoy munching our host's yard. 
They had the freedom to come and go as they pleased to drink from their pen and had a great time browsing.

The pups manage the mob slowing the energy a bit as they spill out. 
Eagerly they had watched us erect the fencing- they know a good thing when they see it. 

Kino found this leg and foot in the greenbelt as the goats cleared the weeds and long grass. 
What is it?
Also uncovered was a good bit of roadside trash along Casa Del Oro, and a rope dog toy

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Coyotes, the Sun and of course a Horse

Going backwards in time today. Time is flexible in this medium- so why not?
Seeing Kino off this morning at GoatCamp he spotted a coyote trotting up the hill stopping at the sight of our original Compadres camp. The coyote sniffed around a bit before adding his manure to the goat's. It sat there a few moments as we watched each other, us wondering where Zuli was.. Then there she was- like a flash after the silvery coyote. The coyote ducked and took off, crossed the street. Then came back and ran around a tree waiting for Zuli. Then off across the street. Then back again. Running circles around a confused Zuli. The coyote bowed, head down and butt upwards. Then off again. It went on like this for awhile, the coyote trying to get Zuli to play and Zuli trying to chase off the persistent Coy. Eventually Zuli gave up and came home. The coyote stood watching her.

Zuli sat with me for a bit while the coyote watched. 

Then he took off, swerving a little letting Zuli catch up as she charged out to chase him across the street.

The coyote stood on the road, Zuli turned and watched for me, what else could she do? 
This coyote was not behaving right. Who did it think it was? Half dog?

Not too long later a woman jogging her four dogs came down the road and the playful coyote was gone.
I had been hearing of the dogs which played games with the coyotes in the greenbelt. 
This time I witnessed it. 
Zuli didn't know what to make of it.

On another day, in another town (at the Farmers Market at the Railyard in Santa Fe), I watched the sun be succumbed by the smoke in a surreal sunset.

Another day at the Kopelov Cut Stone shop in Bernalillo I put the finishing touches on my horse. 
I really enjoyed carving this with Kino's help- my first stone art.

I love working beside Kino. 

Monday, June 6, 2011

Goat Therapy

Goats consume another tasty yard. 
Here we are in the last hours... The trees were full of mistletoe - still a treat for the goats!
They love to follow their people around at the end of the day in a yard looking along with us for the higher hanging parasites which they cannot reach even on their toes.

This yard had multiple mistletoe pickers.. 
Helmut led the crew with a pole for the highest mistletoe. 
He had a loyal group of the big wethers which kept a good eye on his movements. 
The goaties had sweet dreams after munching this yard. All was peaceful here. 
The owners and a visiting friend took part in the transformation of their land which aided the energy and enjoyment of all.

Goat Therapy.
Works as well on the land as it does on the people!