Lambing is over, and the sun is out again. Now we are managing for grass growth and optimum nutrition for our nursing moms. The warm temperatures mean that the annual grasses will go to seed soon, and our ewes need to bite or trample them to keep them leafy and growing a little longer. It's kind of a race against time, but we wont be rushing anybody in reality, just moving sheep and cows often.
Lambs are looking healthy and strong, and we are enjoying their antics as they get braver and more active.
This season is one of our favorites around the farm. Watching the results of last year's grazing management sprouting and growing in the fields is fascinating, and deciding where we should stick to our grazing plan and where we need to change it keeps us pretty busy.
Mid March we were able to put in a transect for monitoring how our grazing is impacting the land using empirical data, through the Ecological Outcome Verification (EOV) program. Our data will be recorded and used to decide whether our land is becoming more fertile, diverse, and healthy over time or if we need to change practices to get better outcomes. It will go into a database that we and other producers will be able to access. Every 5 years a third-party monitor will come out to check on the transect and collect data, and in between we will do yearly monitoring as well. Ideally, we will add in two or three more transects as well, allowing us to verify through monitoring and third party verification that we are making positive change in all our pastures. It was awesome to geek out on soil, dung beetles and plants for several hours, and we look forward to doing more work with EOV and the Land to Market program!
This week is Easter break for the girls, so we are trying to make time to do something fun every day for part of the day with them. Today we are off to have a picnic by one of the seasonal creeks. They wont flow long this year, but we sure do enjoy them while they are here, and it's pretty enevitable that someone is going to end up falling in and getting soaked :-) When you work somewhere so beautiful, sometimes it's nice to just stop and enjoy what you might be taking for granted during all that hustle and bustle.
Happy Spring, Happy Easter, and Happy Grass-growing-flower-blooming-bee-buzzing time from all of us!