Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Bulloney - or Say Cheese

Mom and Dad have a relatively young bull on the Ranch.

He's quiet. Well pretty quiet. As far as I know he's never made it his life's mission to hurt anyone. Dad is selling him this fall but it isn't because he's hard to deal with from a temperment perspective. It's just a pain in the butt to have a bull around before calving is over in the spring. You can end up with a drastically early calving season the next year if he gets creative and crawls a fence. It's easier to get a bull after calving is over so that you can decided when his fun starts rather than him.

I was taking some pictures of the herd up the hill towards the west of the house. They were all sort of artistically spread out and the light was just nice.

He was up pretty close and watching me pretty close and made his way up through the trees to the water trough near the house.

When he was done with his drink he decided that he wanted to check out my camera. I tell you he is almost as bad and Mom and Dad's youngest horse who is almost impossible to get a decent picture of unless he is on the opposite side of the fence from you. And then you still can't get a good photo because the fence is in the way. That boy wants to be petted so bad that you can't get far enough away from him to even get his entire head in the frame.

And the bull was almost the same. I'd squat down to take his picture... to be clear there was a 3-rail fence separating us that I was doing my best to get a photo without it being in...this involved me trying to lean between the two lower rails out into his part of the world... and he'd walk up and put his head down and try and smell the camera...and I would lean back into my part of the world.

I did get some photos of him that I liked from that angle and then I got some more traditional bull photos from the side that showed what kind of bull he is.

My artsy shots are fine for artsy things but to show a bull's confirmation you really need a shot from the side. That will show you how long in the back they are, what kind of legs they have, basically give you a good idea of what kind of calf they might throw.

I climbed through the fence farther away from him so that I could get a shot without the rails obstructing the view. He stood pretty quietly for me while Dad urged me to get a little farther out beside him to get the right angle.

In the back of my mind I was thinking that I was getting pretty far from safety and trying to keep mental track of all the tree branches and holes that were between me and the nearest fence but he really is a quiet bull and he let me finish the photo shoot and then hung around for a few more close-ups afterwards too.

He even let me scratch his head. Once. Just for a second. Until he got a little weirded out by this stranger touching him. Until I decided I'd probably tempted fate long enough and that I didn't need a broken arm or a broken camera and stopped.

We sort of mutually agreed we'd both had enough.

Then I squatted down and took another photo and he came over and tried to smell my camera again.

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