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Winding down while revving up…

Oh, we can almost smell it! “It,” in this particular case, being the end of the 2014 birthing season. In fact as I write this, there are only 6 females left at the Arena that are still due with their 2014 crias. This after starting the parade of birthing shenanigans back in May with a list 70+ deep!  It is also significant that we are experiencing this now at the end of September because last year, by comparison, we had our final birth in late December. Granted, in that case the female in question was named Ascension, whose last 2 crias, Elixir and Centurion, were each Judges’ Choice Males at the Futurity. Given that, certain accommodations were made for Her Highness but coming off of that silliness — let’s face it: birthing in and around the winter solstice is kind of a drag in these parts — we also knew that having planned ahead for 2014, things would be significantly more chill this fall. For we certainly didn’t plan for fewer births this year than last, it’s just that the due dates were all packed into a much narrower window of time. If you were a production female on this farm in 2013 and you weren’t bred by mid-November, you were held open until June/July 2014.

Jennifer was saying just the other day how it seemed not that long ago that we were feeling some birthing fatigue (are we there yet?), yet were only halfway through the list of due moms. Now all of a sudden, here we are with light at the end of the tunnel. All together ladies: PUSH! At least that’s what the past month or so felt like. It was crazy but good. Now you watch: just because I wrote that, the remaining 6 females will go on virtual strike just out of spite.

Regardless, while the birthing activity here comes to a close, we are also simultaneously making preparations for our two shows that are coming up in the middle of October. Even though the fall shows for us are very much a local affair compared to their spring cousins, we really look forward to them both: the first right here in northern Vermont and then a week later in Syracuse, NY. The fact that we’ll get to bust our kids out of school for a couple of days this year (we had Max last year but no Sam) so that they can come and help out, of course just makes it that much more fun too!

Though the vast majority of the older yearlings and now 2 year olds from our 2013/2014 show strings have been either retired (read: bred and in production) or sold, there are still some holdovers from this past April’s squad, including several that will be having their second go-round at this walk-in-circles business that we seem fatalistically attracted to each spring and fall. There are of course some new recruits to the show string as well that were all born in the fall of 2013, and in fact seven of those have never seen a halter or lead before. Given that, you can probably guess what we will all be up to over the next couple of weeks!

Follow me on Twitter @CCNFalpacas

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