Saturday, April 10, 2010

Walden Woods Project - Last Day

We moved the sheep and goats from Walden Woods to another project this afternoon.  When we arrived to begin loading the animals, we found that Reno (our Anatolian shepherd guard dog) and one sheep had been bitten by a rattlesnake.  Both should be fine.  This is the first time we've had a dog (or a sheep) encounter a snake.  We treated Reno with dexamethazone (a steroid that reduces inflammation and pain) and penicillin.  We'll see how the lamb is doing tomorrow.

Overall, I'm very pleased with the job the sheep did.  They removed the invasive grasses and impacted most if not all of the poison oak plants in their paddocks.  They also grazed the thistles quite extensively, which should reduce the amount of seeds these plants produce.  We'll bring animals back here in July to impact the poison oak a second time.

Our herding dogs, Mo and Taff, are critical to our ability to do these types of projects.  At Walden Woods, we did not have the ability to set up loading pens.  Mo and Taff brought the sheep to the trailer and helped us load.  When we got to our new contract, Taff herded the sheep up our clients' driveway and into their new paddock.  They are amazing dogs!

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