The plan for today was to graze the main yards, and in the process check out a couple of sheep with sore feet, to see if they needed doctoring (they didn't). From there, we grazed across the Road Paddock and into Eeyore's Patch, which is the paddock at the base of the big hill--part of the January burn. Eeyore's Patch, not surprisingly, has a section with LOTS of thistle, and also has a fair bit of chicory, plantain, lucerne and clover. It is made even more attractive by not having been grazed in months, so it's fresh and relatively lush. From there, my (overly ambitious) plan was to take them up into the Long Paddock for a munch on the cutting sagg regrowth, then back down and into the Lucerne Reserve before heading back to the Racecourse. Ahem. They just settled down in Eeyore's Patch and declined to move. We had lunch and a nap. No sheep movement. We packed up and stood around watching. No movement. We went down to have a look for any regrowth in the fenced-off old tree reserve (yes!). No sheep movement. Finally, we gave in gracefully to the inevitable, and left the flock in Eeyore's Patch until the next shepherding day on Wednesday. It was a full shepherding day, and the first Monday in August with good enough weather to take videos. I've appended a composite video for the day to the end of this post. It was a beautiful day--about 14 C (57F), sunny but very windy. Hence I had to mute the field recordings and do a voice-over :-)
And great excitement--the cygnets have hatched! They are still in the nest, and I'm pretty sure I could see them on mama's back with my binocs. In fact, they seemed determined to get out, and she was having the devil's own time keeping them under wraps. I didn't dare get close enough to video them, but in the photo below you can see mama and papa both close to the nest. Lovely!