Thursday, March 25, 2010


Jake is a border collie, and can be very intense.
He does not care about sheep.
What he lives to do is retrieve.  Not birds, but anything that would fit in his mouth along with a gullible human to throw it for him again, and again, and again...

Luna likes to retrieve, but it is not at the top of her list.  She would prefer some sheep.
But the sheep are at home, so she'll have to make do with fetching.  Her's is not a frantic swim to fetch the toy so that is can be thrown again.  She doesn't leave much of a wake as she swims out.

She does like to coodinate her outfit and her toys though

Jake doesn't take his eyes off the toy

He waits

And then he leaps

And then he powers out to get it, leaving the water churning in his wake

And then he just looks weird!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Tuesday afternoon

This afternoon we decided to clean up what was left of the burn pile that was in the vegetable garden, and also gather up the rest of the branches and move them to another spot to burn.  We have a row of douglas fir on the south side of the south chicken field.  We had been trimming the lower branches off to open it up and get the grass growing under the trees again, as well as returning our view over the neighbour's nice field to the south.

As soon as we brought the truck into the field and started loading it up, there were a few hens that just had to check it out. 

They headed deeper and deeper into the pile, until we couldn't see them at all.  Eventually we did get them all out but one.  I knew where she was, and there was lots of room under the curved branches, so I wasn't worried about her getting crushed as we piled the rest of the branches on.

The branches were all loaded up, and we headed up to the burn pile, where we unloaded enough that I was able to get the hen out and return her to her field.

After that, the dogs figured it must be time for their afternoon walk.  We decided to head back to the river and check out Duncan Bar, the eastern chunk of Glen Valley Regional Park.  It consisted of a long triangular piece of land between the river and the railway track, and at the eastern end it dwindled to nothing.  It seemed like it must have been an old farmstead at one time.  There was no big sandbar like there was at Poplar Bar, but there was enough sand along the edge to make it enjoyable.  There was an old gravel road to start and then a grassy track to follow.  We came across a few old fruit trees, like this plum tree,  and there was also a patch of raspberries.  I want to go back and check it out when the fruit is in season.  You never know, there might be a new flavour of plum jam coming up!

Across the river there were some rusting boats moored, including an old B.C. ferry

Luna managed to find a stick, although it was a bit on the large size

Luna swam with it, but Jake went for something that was a bit easier to handle.  For some reason the border collies do not seem to have the sense to pick up a big stick in the middle, instead of at one end.  Our lab Echo used to carry around small logs, perfectly balanced across her mouth.

Calli found the biggest rock she could get in her mouth, and continued to try and find China.  Not much success with that, so she took Mr. Rock for a swim

We tried to practice some agility over the logs, but the fool with the camera in her face had no sense of timing.
Luna found something else to jump over, and camera lady got it right that time.  Jake wanted me to take the big stick home for him.

When we got home, Calli had dirty marks on her side, so we got her to sit in the pool.  When she shakes she is not very effective, and don't think she had even tried  at this point.  Her tail is like a big paint brush, dripping water in loopy circles.  Maybe next time we could sit her in paint and get her to walk around on a big canvas.  Then we could sell it for big bucks! Yeah, I'm dreaming.  Maybe it would buy a box of chicken legs, heck if she could pay for a few doggy meals, that would be better than nothing.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

The predators are circling

This guy has been hanging around a lot lately


And this four footed predator or one of his relatives has been seen as well

Yesterday, a few times I noticed a crow flying from behind our burn pile with something in it's beak.
My first thought was an egg, as that is what it looked like as the crow flew over.
When I saw the second crow with something, it didn't seem big enough to be an egg, but maybe part of a shell?
Finally I wandered out to see if I could find a nest somewhere close to where the crows were originating from.

Unfortunately I saw this instead.

I'm blaming the hawk for this one.  That tree it was perched in was only 50 ft from the body.
I think the coyote would have taken it and run, and the chances of a coyote getting into the area where this hen was are slim.  Also, it was killed in daylight hours, because it wouldn't have been in this spot either if it was dusk. 
I'm betting on the hawk.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Glen Valley Regional Park

Yesterday we drove down to the river to  Glen Valley Regional Park.  There are some trails along the river, which, being a park, are on-leash trails, but it was a change of scenery for all of us.  At first we walked down to the water's edge, as there was a nice bit of sand showing along the edge.  Instead of heading back up to the trails, we headed east along the river, and then a wonderful sand bar appeared.  That part of the river is still affected by the tides to some degree, and it was around the time of the low tide, so that combined with the lower water levels at this time of the year probably played a part in the appearance of the bar.  It was doggy fetching heaven. 

Jake was thrilled

The sand was deep and soft

He practiced his sliding stops

Calli was planning on sending her rock to China

Here's a stick

Can you throw it for me?

Posing, who has time for that...................... when there are sticks to fetch
But some how or other, the sticks kept disappearing.

So Luna found one that would be hard to lose

Jake, can you get 'em to throw it for us?

Larry ended up walking back to the river bank to round up some more sticks
Jake got rid of some of the water that was slowing him down

Luna waded out to get a head start.
Geez, I hope no hungry sturgeon are swimming by

Okay, we're ready 

And Jake is the winner, which is a good thing

He always brings it right back to you, unlike some dogs we know.  In fact, he is quite happy to pick up where Luna leaves off, and deliver it to our feet.

Sometimes though, much to Jake's disgust, Luna beats him to it

And what's worse, SOMETIMES she doesn't bring it back, or drop it, but she tries to bury it in the sand.  And Jake hates to get a mouth full of sand

Bark!Bark! --quit digging in the sand--Bark!Bark!--how can they throw the stick if we don't get it back to them--Bark!Bark!

And Jake has a shrill bark, verrry irritating, and we got to hear it twice.
For every bark he did, a second later we got the echo of it as it bounced off the island on the other side of the channel.

Thanks, Poplar Bar, it was nice meeting you.