Hotel V6 Remodel

What makes for a good 5 star wildlife hotel?  Good food, good water and cover that allows for a peaceful nights sleep. Together in concert they will leave any wildlife population with a case of the Warm Fuzzies. I’m sure if I could listen in at one of the local watering holes, where most of the daily gossip is shared, I might hear words of praise for the 10 new watering troughs that are now up and running because of a heavy duty plastic pipe that is tough and resilient called Poly Pipe. All I needed was my sons tractor, a roll of this Poly Pipe and a U.S. geological map to show the way, add in a little sweat and I’m in business.                 It’s very satisfying now, to observe the great number of critters that, like us, can’t go very long without a drink of the wet stuff. But for too long I forgot all about the little guys that looked up at the 18” high vertical walls of my watering troughs and could only yearn for a way to get a drink. It amazes me, how my carelessness of the past is still practised by many caretakers in the livestock business of today. Still thinking for, livestock only, excluding most all of the other living things the privilege of a drink of water.             So what does it take to provide equal opportunity for a drink of water? Not much, mostly just recognizing that with a little creativity making a user friendly way to enter and exit a watering trough is easy. For me a big rock the height of the trough works well both inside and out. At one location what arrived recently with the new watering trough is the Honey Bee. Which is receiving much attention in the press today because of there declining numbers. But here at the V6 they are multiplying quite nicely because of the moss that grows on the surface of a water trough which makes for a wonderful landing strip to land on and then get a drink of water. For me a watering trough should provide a drink to any and all of the critters that live within drinking distance.                  What about something to eat? By virtue of the fact that grazing is a part of Mother Nature’s grand plan then the question becomes how can I integrate my grazing cattle and horses that I must have to help pay the bills into a healthy grazing recipe. My grazing animals are allowed to eat about half of a plant and leave half so there is no bare ground showing after I leave a pasture. I believe that I should try to not graze in the same way over and over but rather mix up my grazing plans much as Nature does. Making my footprints on the land ever so lightly which will help keep the long term health of the V6 secure is a must.               What’s left? Is a place to sleep and feel safe. The rooms will vary greatly because of the great variety of species on our ranch. What will be paradise to one critter to another, the question might be “can I see another room?” My practice of following Nature’s lead will allow for plenty of hiding places necessary so all critters get a reasonable chance at surviving.                 The green growing things, so important to all life, will be in a healthy regenerative state that will delight the pallets of all the grazing animals. Now to all you predator out there. There will always be sufficient numbers of silly, lame, lazy and careless critters to keep you all “fat and sassy”. And lastly I can’t forget all you scavengers waiting for the next road kill and when one of the ranch critters dies I promise I won’t bury it, thus allowing the cycle of life to work for the benefit of we of the living.              I think the forgoing thoughts are a pretty good definition of “Steward of the Land”                     See Ya                       Jack

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