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December 2012

Larimer 2013: Less water = less farming = less food

"When the cities are restricted to necessary water usage, ONLY then should agricultural water be affected ... This is an agricultural community. Let’s act like we support the agriculture that actually happens here."
-- Kathryn Warnick, Rock Soup Ranch, LLC

For the full letter, go to this North Forty News link.

Read also: Larimer farmers warned scorched forests may shut off irrigation water - The Denver Post

and: Despite winter storms, Colorado's snowpack remains low

Fortune Cookie: A Christmas Tale now an e-book!

Click here to find Fortune Cookie - A Christmas Tale - By Karin Livingston - at Amazon
Fortune cookies have a strange effect on horsewoman Rosalyn Mallory, and if she doesn't get help, it could be a deadly Christmas. Get Karin Livingston’s quick-read Kindle release, Fortune Cookie: A Christmas Tale, at Amazon! (U.S. $2.99)

I used to love those old Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys mysteries, with at least a picture in every chapter, a caption, and a chapter title. With e-books, we can afford to “print” that concept, in this case, applied to Fortune Cookie. I serialized the story here last year. I hope the tale makes you smile, and that you guess the secret behind the hobo. Owners of iPads can get Fortune Cookie, too. Just Google the Kindle app for your iPad and download to get access to all Kindle titles. Merry Christmas!

A (bald) distinguished visitor

I could not believe it when this lovely bald eagle showed up this morning! Bald eagles periodically park at our stable, especially during the winter. Check out our Wildlife photo album for other great wild-animal visitors, including more bald eagle pictures.

Bald eagle from afar and up high - Poudre River Stables - Fort Collins - Colorado - 80521 Bald eagle closer view - Poudre River Stables - Fort Collins - Colorado - 80521

(Another wild animal plays a key role in Karin Livingston's novel, Winning Bet.)

You might also enjoy: You Don't Have to Look Like Me to Be My Friend (video)

Just an old goat

Jack was a 2000, 2001, or 2002 model. He loved apples, especially homegrown apples and crabapples that fell from the tree hanging over his pen. Jack's job title was Weed Eater.

Jack the Goat, October 7, 2012, on weed control - Poudre River Stables - Fort Collins - Colorado - 80521

Jack wreaked havoc on most plants, especially domestic fruit trees. He and his relatives also destroyed leafy spurge, a noxious weed. Our weed whackers grazed inside a portable, electrified pen.

Jack, left, and brother Lawrence were a big help managing leafy spurge - Poudre River Stables - Fort Collins - Colorado - 80521

We learned that Jack & Co. often did not need an electric pen after they spent several unintended hours wandering loose around the property. They had no intention of ever running away, let alone getting out of sight of humans. Jack and his younger roommate, Legolas, both Nubian Goats, delighted visitors who got nibbled by the welcoming committee at Poudre River Stables.

Lawrence, left, and Jack, right, enjoy Kalinda's company along with their young relatives, Legolas and Sam - Poudre River Stables - Fort Collins - Colorado - 80521

This fall Jack assisted in the reconstruction of the south wall of our barn due to the 2011 October snow storm, which sent tree limbs crashing down around us. Whoever planted poplars two feet away from the barn had a very bad idea. Jack enjoyed helping with most projects by attempting to eat whatever was available, wood scraps, McDonald's wrappers, gloves.

Jack assists Gregg with reconstruction of the barn wall due to damage by a snow storm and poplar trees planted too close to the barn - Poudre River Stables - Fort Collins - Colorado - 80521
A Weekend of Horror - a client newsletter from the archives tells how a dog came in off of the public bike trail and mauled our goat, Lawrence - Poudre River Stables - Fort Collins - Colorado - 80521
Jack had some bad scares in his life, the worst one the
Weekend of Horror in which his brother, Lawrence, was mauled by a dog off of the Poudre River Bike Trail. Jack saved himself by jumping up on a stump out of the dog’s reach. (To this day, our horse Billy, who witnessed the whole thing, does not like white dogs.) Then there was the time lightning struck the lower pasture. Jack and Lawrence ran, taking the portable pen with them, and wrapped it and them around a tree.

Last week, Jack lay down in the goat house.

He sounded like he had the occasional smoker's cough, but his appetite was good, and his plumbing worked.

Jack looked up and bleated whenever I came into his house. He butted my hands and nibbled at my pockets in search of dried willow or Ranch-Way Critter Candy. He drank warm diluted Gatorade three or four times a day, and just about took my hand off when I slipped him bites of the occasional apple. For you goat experts out there, we did try antibiotics and Vitamins B12 and B1.

Jack the Goat eats dried willow. A dog dish holds water, and goat pellets sit in the disposable plastic container.

Nestled under the heat lamp amid bales of hay, he never got up.

Dr. Landes and Gregg helped me say goodbye to Jack yesterday.

Thank you, Jodie, Patti, and Mark for our Jack, who was quite a bit more than just an old goat.

Strangles outbreak reported on riding club's Facebook page

FORT COLLINS - Colorado State University's English Riding Club cancelled its mounted meeting tonight due to a strangles outbreak at the equine center.

We are very sad to report that due to the recent outbreak of strangles at the equine center, we will be canceling our dressage clinic with Jessica tonight. We will hopefully reschedule this for sometime next semester.
-- CSU English Riding Club's Facebook page

Strangles, a nickname for distemper, is highly contagious among horses, and can be fatal to very young or very old animals, and those with weakened immune systems. Transmission of strangles to humans is rare.

Horses can be vaccinated for the disease, but the vaccination is not 100% effective. Facilities trying to control or prevent the spread of strangles can use quarantine and other procedures recommended by the American Association of Equine Practitioners.

Colorado State University experienced a strangles outbreak at its equine center in 2006 that killed two horses, and sickened many others.