mercredi 23 juin 2010

Art Holiday in France

Fancy eating well and having fun learning new skills with artist Kate Hardy  in the Pyrenees mountains?  A friend of mine is running an art week at her beautiful secluded farmhouse in the foothills of the Pyrenees - fantastic views......check it out here:

There are only two places left now.

dimanche 20 juin 2010

New llama - Carabar Lily

This is Carabar Lily, a new arrival on our little farm.  Her name Carabar is the name of a witch in France, so we have named her Lily.  She has settled in with our old male, castrated llama, Larry, in fact she is now the dominant llama in the pen, but no aggression.

Unfortunately Carabar Lily has produced two handicapped crias (llama baby), so the owners asked me to home her while they had an entire male llama visiting their other females, to ensure she did not become pregnant.  I am happy to say that she may stay permanently with us.  We already love her and she eats from my hand.  Female llamas are known to be harder than males to train, but when things have calmed down here after the summer run of tourists and visitors, I will get down to some serious training with her.

Llamas are often used to 'guard' herds of sheep against dogs, wolves and cougars (not many of them i the Corbieres I am glad to say!!). They need to have some training to do this efficiently but they do seem to have some natural instinct.  Carabar Lily is already very possessive about the chickens.  The coop is in the llamas pen and when I let the chooks out to free range every afternoon, Carabar Lily hums her little warning noise when they go out of her sight, and when they come back to roost at dusk she often 'herds' them into the coop by touching her nose on their tails - this is very endearing.

The 'S' Word again......I don't believe it.......

Snow? In June - I had to 'phone a friend' to coonfirm that I had just heard the weather forecaster on TF1 mention the 'S'Word and Pyrenees in the same sentence - Not again, please......all my pants are late this year.

Update on the Empress Trees - they are doing very well, lots of leaves but they are not enormous, however the Empress Tree I moved that was not doing well had gone completely mad, and when we get some sun it will be providing shade for the tortoise.

Picture shows latest excavations inside our ruined mill that dates from before the Knights Templar occupied the area (before 1200)

Fete de Pays Corbieres - A good day, our village was hosting an historical walk along the river, probably pointing out the 'lack' of wildlife........ Just before lunch the group reached our mill and we actually learnt more historical facts from one of the visitors. He is coming back to see us tomorrow - La Journee des Moulins 20 juin - when we have an open day - Porte Ouverte. Today was the first day of a weekend of Patrimoine - heritage - when most museums and national monuments are open for free, we had about 10 visitors which I think was good considering we have had driving torrential rain......

I will add some photos later, Blogger seems to have changed its layout and it is not clear how to add photos now......