Here's one of the annual joys of country living - calves!
Our cow Ruby dropped her calf on Sunday afternoon. Here she is, about two minutes old:
All the livestock milled about, watching the new arrival:
The first thing a cow does is lick her calf vigorously. This accomplishes three things: it cleans the calf, it stimulates its circulation, and it familiarizes the mother with the scent of her new baby. This is an important bonding time.
First shaky attempt to stand, about ten minutes old:
Boom, she's down!
Our horse, Brit, couldn't contain her curiosity any longer:
Mom's still licking:
We were concerned when the calf stumbled toward Brit, apparently mistaking her for mama:
She got right between Brit's back legs.
But with the utmost care, Brit disentangled herself from the calf and stepped away, to Ruby's (and our) relief.
Meanwhile, Matilda - who had been grazing elsewhere - came over to see what all the excitement was about. She couldn't believe her good luck - a calf to spoil!
Searching (a little inaccurately) for a first meal:
And that was our excitement on Sunday. We named the calf Raven.