We moved the calves from last spring/summer away from their mothers this last weekend - albeit only into the adjoining field. The idea is that they are more than strong enough to cope without the milk that they are still getting from the cows, which, some 7-9 months post-birth, is tailing off in quantity and quality. The mothers also need a rest, to gather strength before this year's births - not least Amy who is waddling around looking like a Thelwell cartoon and reminding us that she will probably give birth in April. And by moving just a field away, the animal pyschology view is that this is kinder than carting them off to the other end of the village and forcing a clean break.

Most of the mums didn't seem to care much - and none of the offspring either. They went their respective ways to feed on their own piles of haylage, and occasionally returning to the fence to look at each other or nuzzle or chew the cud together. The calves are behaving quite like teenagers now - independent souls who hang out in a pack in their winter shaggy (trendy?) coats and look blankly (sullenly?) at us humans as we pass - a far cry from those cute little things "Daz" white back in the summer. I suspect their relationship with their mothers might be similar.

One of the cows decided however to spend most of Saturday evening and all of Sunday day periodically moo-ing at full volume through the fence, to which her offspring paid little attention - just the occasional nonchalant grunty moo in return, typical teenager! The noise certainly woke me up earlier than expected on Sunday morning (which wasn't welcome due to the wine imbibed the night before!) - and I guess the sound may have disturbed some of the nearby village neighbours too..... Sorry if you were one of them!