September 18, 2014 … land of the golden fleece

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Moonshine valley

Moonshine valley farmland

Yesterday a friend of my brother-in-law allowed me to wander over his farm at the back of Moonshine Hill Road. This is a sheep farm within a few minutes of the Hutt Valley and yet somehow as wild and remote as many places in the middle of the island. At first sight, the landscape is green and gentle, and worthy of study as a landscape.

Curious lamb

Somehow, when there are triplets, one is always more interested in the distractions while the other two carry on feeding

I forgot to ask how many sheep were on the farm, but it was lambing time so there were sheep and tiny sheep everywhere. Interestingly, the farmers had scanned their pregnant ewes, and those bearing twins and triplets were on the lower slopes. Those bearing a single lamb were in the paddocks at the top of the hill. There were an extraordinary number of triplets.


On the skyline

The higher I climbed up the farm tracks, the more interesting the photographic encounters I had with the stock.


The technique used by the lambs must be tough on the ewe, especially where twins or triplets are concerned

One aspect that I noticed was that the lambs are quite brutal in getting access to the ewe’s udder, head-butting it vigorously to get the milk flowing. It was also clear that the mother’s first instinct was to flee as a human approached. The lambs on the other hand always wanted a feed before they were ready to run.


As I got higher, the weather cleared and the views out to the South got more spectacular. It was possible to look out beyond Mana Island to the South Island in the far distance.


The land-forms in this area are quite striking, and I have often made pictures of the hillside on the other side of the road. This was the best view yet of the folded hillside.

Another change of scene tomorrow.



About wysiwygpurple

I am a family man, a passionate amateur photographer and a retired academic . What's the purpose of this blog? Well in the first instance it provides me with a platform from which to resume writing, an activity I greatly enjoy. What will the blog be about? Anything that takes my fancy but it is likely to arise from things I see and experience, in my family, in my travels, or anything else I feel like. Each daily post will contain one or more images made the previous day. Sometimes the image will illustrate the points made in the prose, and sometimes the prose will attempt to interpret the image. What kind of images will they be? Always safe for work and family. Usually they will be representational, and sometimes they will be impressionistic or experimental.
This entry was posted in Animals, Moonshine Valley, Weather. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to September 18, 2014 … land of the golden fleece

  1. Nice to see all that. I wonder why the proliferation of twins/triplets?

  2. Enjoyed those pictures very much. Sally.

  3. Toya says:

    Love the lambs, and enjoyed the shift from water.

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