The lovely people who attended our knitting evening on 22nd September, might remember Juno had let herself out the field and was casually grazing on the grass verge that adjoins the carpark at Burwash Manor. Much amuzement followed when in trying to get her back in, Tracy let Happy out as well! Kari-Helene and Tracy managed to get them both back in and received a round of applause.
Well Juno has a pechant for believing the grass is greener on the other side of the fence, so when some idiot thinks it’s a good idea to dismantle the fence, she sees an opportunity to go exploring. This time, she took her friend Isis. Unfortunately the fence runs parallel to the road and a gateway that leads to a massive open space of over 200 acres. Tucked away in the corner are the boys.
Tracy received a phone call to say that some alpacas were out and raced over to the farm, although only early evening, it was now dark. In trying to coax the adventurous pair back to their own field, Tracy was dismayed to find that they kept getting spooked by the lights of cars driving past and whirling away to run off into the night. After three attempts, plan B was put into action. Alpacas put themselves to bed when it gets dark; they settle together in the cush position and face in different directions so they can keep watch for any preditors that might be a threat to their survival. They are also a social herd animal and will stay with other alpacas (safety in numbers). Although impossible to find them in the field, Tracy thought it probable they would go to where the boys live. She let them be for about 30 minutes and loaded Bessie (the van) with electric fence paraphenalia. She then drove round to where the boys are and sure enough, saw Juno and Isis settled down on the other side of their fence. Whilst they were settled and using Bessie’s headlights, Tracy built a fence around them so they were secure for the night. Finishing late, in the rain, she came home and went to bed.
On waking the next morning, Tracy was horrified to see a voice message and text on her phone saying that two alpacas were out on the road. The time showed 11.30 p.m. It was now 5.30 a.m. and with frantic haste, Tracy drove to the farm imagining the worst. She checked the boys’ field first and Juno and Isis were missing; the new fence was on the floor. Seriously stressed, she drove into the carpark at Burwash Manor. On doing a cursory head count, she counted 13 females, stopping in her tracks she counted again…14. There should be 14… Sure enough, there was Juno and Isis in with their mothers and the rest of the herd. The fences were strong and all was as it should be.
Almost sobbing with relief, Tracy bought a bottle of wine from the wine merchant and sent a text to Mike and Sue Radford (the owners of Burwash Manor) saying thank you. She then came home to start work on Purl Alpaca stuff.
On returning to the farm that afternoon, Sue told her that she and Mike had driven around the big field (called Bael’s Acre – not sure who Bael is, some sort of giant?) but that they hadn’t been able to find them. She felt a bit guilty about taking the wine under false pretences as it wasn’t them who had rescued Juno and Isis.
Tracy contacted the local paper’s letter page and asked them to put in a letter of thanks. The newsdesk phoned to say they would like to do a feature of the story. This they did and here we are, a week later with still no idea of who the stranger is who rescued Tracy’s alpacas and put them back in the right paddock. They haven’t answered any of the appeals and in our view, truely an ultruistic hero. Having rebuilt fences, then built fences for the new paddock, our girls have moved and to see their reaction, a short clip is on YouTube.