Friday, February 06, 2009

Who Needs Punxsutawney Phil?

Who needs Punxsutawney Phil to predict when Spring will arrive when you have Sophie the cow? In about nine degrees F, she had a new calf out in the middle of the pasture on the ice. I say Spring is right around the corner, and if the baby can hold out until tomorrow, it will be about 60 degrees and sunny.

What a wild ride February can be.

Sophie is a Holstein cow that I was given as a cute little calf. She was raised on goat milk in a bottle and is now the largest cow in our herd. She's had a calf a year, usually in February, since she was three years old. Holsteins are those commercial dairy cows whose offspring are routinely taken away early so that the milk produced can be pooled and sold. Seldom can people appreciate their wonderful mothering instincts and grasp how sad it is to deprive them of the experience of raising their own young. I will give Sophie a big kiss and perhaps take a picture later today.

Other signs of impending Spring: the Embden gander is escorting individual geese to the goose house to start the egg laying season. He sits outside and waits until they re-emerge.

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