When one thinks of four-legged, black and white, bamboo eating animals, one would most often think of the panda bear. After today, however, I will think a little closer to home. (And you may, too!) Why? Well, we happen to have a small bamboo forest by our pond. We call it a forest, it's more like a patch. I happened to glance out there today and saw cows in our bamboo forest, munching away on what leaves they could reach. I tried to get a picture, but the guilty little things came out before I could snap one off, choosing instead to pose in front of the bamboo.
I attempted to get them back into the pasture, but they just kept running from me, either around the pond at top speed or into the water. As angry at them as I was, they were beautiful standing by the pond.
Free cows ended up being a battle all day. They tore down quite a bit of bamboo and ate almost everything in our vegetable garden, including my rare heirloom Festivity corn (corn that looks like indian corn but is really sweet corn) that I was really excited about. Luckily I have a handful of seeds that didn't fit in the garden I can try planting next year. They chose to stay out of the garden full of blue Hopi corn, winter squash, and pole beans we planted for the livestock. They came back into the pasture, by jumping the fence, during evening chores. Guess they wanted to see if what I was serving for supper was any better than what they could find on their own. I went ahead and put them into an extra stall in the barn. We can't have them keep escaping, and it will cost a fortune to provide all their feed without pasture, so it looks like they may be getting butchered sooner rather than later.