Long Meg's Diary 11-07-12
I have a new daughter called Tintagel. She’s lovely; a little woolly all-grey wonderful girl for me. Maes Howe's daughter Belas Knap wil be a wonderful playmate for my lovely girl.
Yesterday I gave birth in the field. It was warm and dry and within moments of being born my daughter was struggling to get to her little feet. I hummed and hummed – it’s good to let the little one know my hum. She’s strong and once up she didn’t fall. Llama cria normally tumble over but my daughter hasn’t given me too many worries yet. When feeding her I stand over her and she is cradled by my long legs. Then she kushes again and sits by my side.
After a couple of hours it started to rain and our people took us up to the barn. I’ve spent every day for a month waiting to go into the nursing pen, and have often sat in there and waited. It’s soft and comfortable – a small space with straw to protect the little one and water and hay for me.
The rest of the herd came up too – they are so enthusiastic to see babies – and my brothers Stenness and Brodgar have been very good, giving their niece a good sniff all over. I was put in the pen and the herd all kushed outside. It’s a very sensible way to integrate babies – the more excitable and pushier llamas ‘get it out of their system’ by the time the cria is let out. Silbury has a pointy snout and really wants to sniff my daughter but has to stretch to do this. Hetty Pegler is probably a little jealous. This is the second llama baby at Old King Street Farm in a fortnight – Maes Howe had Belas Knap a fortnight ago – and Hetty P would like her own baby. Probably next year.
After a few hours I was taken out of the pen by my people so I could visit the dung heap, and I admit I did squeak and squawk, but our people understand and I was back with baby in a trice.
I guess we’ll take it easy today. If the weather is good, we’ll be let out with the whole herd and will make our way down the slope to the good, fresh pasture of Oak Field. I expect we’ll see our people regularly – they are very keen on llama babies.
I’m in the pen with my baby chewing the cud. Have to make lots of good milk, so excuse me whilst I concentrate on that.
More news from Golden Valley Llamas soon