Long Meg’s Diary – the birth of Stanton Drew
I’m a Mum again! More great excitement at Golden Valley Llamas on Thursday when I gave birth to my second son, Stanton Drew. I seemed to surprise our people again. This is what happened.
As usual, the female herd had mooched up from Lake Field to the barn early in the morning. Our gentle female person came to meet us. We normally like to spend our mornings with our people in the yard. But this morning, things were different. I suddenly started to give birth. There were few a drops of blood and I had several contractions. Everyone became excited except Doll Tor who was kushed in front of me chewing her cud. The other girls all buzzed around and were very interested in what was going on.
It was a really quick birth. The baby stuck his nose and feet out of me and was then on the mat in a very short time. My female person watched anxiously, and was so pleased she didn’t have to help with the birth, and I was pretty happy too. After a bit of floundering around the boy was up on his feet and advancing on me for first milk. My placenta came out quickly and the baby looked for my teats. He fed. The really important thing for him is the first feed. He needs to have lots of mother’s milk in the first day, so I made sure he did. Later in the day, our people helped and gave my son a booster meal. I’m always concerned when our people do things to my baby, but they mean well and don’t hurt him. My female person put some nasty black liquid on his umbilical cord for it to shrivel up. Apparently this is good for a cria. It makes me hum a lot when they examine the cria or pick him up and weigh him, but it’s okay really.
That first morning, my female person made me and my boy our own special pen out of hay bales. We were kept penned in for the first day and night. The rest of the girls were left in the outer pen. What they all like about this is that they can eat lots of hay and can stick their noses through the rails of the pen to sniff my baby. I was taken out every few hours by our people to the dung heap but always came rushing back noisily humming to my cria.
On Friday, Stanton Drew was introduced fully to the other girls, and if a little llama could suffer death by sniffing, then this is when it could happen. At one stage four of the girls were all sniffing away at my boy’s face and checking him out. Our people like watching this and always laugh.
Then later on Friday the female llama herd all went off to our new pasture, Home Field, where Stanton Drew had a first chance to see grass and clover. Not that that means much to him at the moment. All he needs is my milk.
My boy ran around the field. Then he was tired and sat in the sun. I regularly went up to him and hummed until he stood up and fed.
Since he was born we’ve been called into the barn overnight so my boy doesn’t get a chill if it rains. And now on Sunday morning we’re in the yard and are about to go back to the field for the day, though if it’s hot I expect we’ll be back for rest and shade.
Just now I persuaded him to feed again – ‘hum, hum, hum’, from me, ‘little squeak’, from Stanton Drew, followed by ‘suck, suck, suck’.
More llama chat from Old King Street Farm soon.