Monday, July 11, 2011

Little Maremma Dogs Have Big Fun

This morning dawned partly cloudy with awesome bright lightning and some sprinkles. 
Not near what the ground needs- but it is a start and it sure smells good.

The double rainbow was a nice touch.

The Maremma pups love cool mornings like this. 
Add just a little moisture and they have a great romp.

They feel rich to have their goatherd home for awhile- and with some good exercise their spirits are high.

Suddenly a a couple pups caught a scent in the air...

They resumed play, but a moment later Curly let out a warning bark calling the others to attention.

But this too was brief, and the pups were back to play.

Their puppy-goat came by to see what the dogs were up to and browsed around the edges as they played.

Swirly came out of the pen to investigate also...

And off to join the fun!

Curly was mostly aloof from the games-watching and listening...
She checked out the horses which were waiting patiently for their morning meal.

With Swirly joining in the fun started all over again.

Then Rocky came out of the goat pen and greeted his boys.

They played briefly...

And then led them off on a tour of the valley to smell the smells and mark the bushes...

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Eldorado Independence Day Parade

Our Horned Locust crew was invited to participate in Eldorado's 4th of July parade this year! 
A few of our good friends helped us wrangle some of the critters. 
Here is Chauny with old Blue Duck getting ready to hit the road

And Krishan with Bucky.

We tried out different combinations to see who matched up best with each participant.
Here is Anusha with Football... the little red goat was too stubborn to walk on a lead however and had to be replaced with Louise, a white and black kid born over the winter...

We all worked on parading before the parade...

Louise took to the pace with zeal led by Jorge.

Doonie was a little surprised by a flag- but then remembered she was not so young a filly anymore...

All the excitement was fun for her though- she loves activity, people and big trucks!

Our number one fan and reason for being in Eldorado, Jean, as Eldorado Citizen of the Year, rode as Parade Marshall.

Our horses have been exposed to all type of distractions over the years. 
Dad's former Polo-Playing Pinto, Pecos, was pretty placid amongst all the excitement.

Doonie made friends with a young palomino who was celebrating his 5th birthday.

We all had a blast bringing up the rear of the parade- and the goats were a hit with the crowd.

Afterwards we met some gals who are working on promoting wild mustangs as useful mounts. 
This guy here, who hails from Nevada, looked completely at home at his first ever parade. They said he had a total of 30 rides previous to this event. Lots of groundwork set him up for success it would seem.
She encouraged us to join her non-profit in showcasing mustangs in parades and such to promote understanding and exposure of people to a fine animal which is currently much maligned in the horseworld. 
We look forward to participating in her educational events with Chopo (our little red mustang/quarterhorse) and our new Jicarilla Mustang after we get him settled and in harness so to speak. 

Then it was time for lunch. 
My niece, Sonia, joined us (as well as her parents after they returned with the cars).

After eating a great meal (prepared by Kino) it was off to the greenbelt for Kino and the goats. 

Dad saw them to the greenbelt and then took the rest of the day off, leaving Kino to work the herd on his first solo flight (he rode Doonie-so flight is the appropriate term, certainly). 

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Hot Topic

Our previous camp was on the south edge of Eldorado where the air seems a bit clearer, closer to the edge of the smoke stream. 
But this was the view of the Los Conchas fire from our new camp Friday night.
 The vegetation is so dry out there- amazing the devastation a spark can so easily cause. 
The implementation of fire-fuel reducing goatscaping is so needful SO NEW! Over 2 dozen residences in Eldorado have supported us in our new frontier this year (almost 100 homes goatscaped in Eldorado in the last year, many people now telling us they are waiting for the monsoon re growth to have us back); there are many residents within Eldorado which have seen the value in the goat and have a fire safe perimeter. 
The ECIA has contracted with us twice this year to create safer public spaces between neighborhoods in both Gallina Park and Pueblo Canon Park. 

Not least  the local Volunteer Firefighters have thanked us for the work we have done in various neighborhoods. 
While working at the water tanks, next to the horse stables, I was astounded to see the large number of trucks and trailers haul out dry vegetation to fill up the landfill, maintaining the bare areas of mono growth. This method of harvesting weeds creates the inability of the land to transition, to evolve through succession. 
With the use of goats these annual opportunists are broken down feeding the microbes which are the fundamental neccessity in a healthy soil which allow grasses and other symbiotic plants to flourish. As the goat mob browses through they are breaking up and stepping in the dry stalks (carbon) and adding their urine and manure (nitrogen), thus feeding the the organic processors that is dirt.     

The goats compost right on site and promote healthier scapes... without the fire.