Sara was lying down in the front corner of the barnyard, and while I was rattling the pasture chain putting Misty in--and marveling at the pigs who lay nearby, motionless like corpses through it all--Sara got up. She met me at the gate and followed me over to the chicken coop, probably hoping I was giving out pellets again. I was allowed to touch a finger to her nose. I think she's warming up to me! :D
As I turned to go, Sara just stood there, so I sidled along to where I could see her rear end. I must confess to playing Peeping Susan as I shone the powerful flashlight on her--and I was rewarded for my indiscretion! I noticed a small streak of wet on her rump left by her fly-lashing tail. Since the barnyard was dry, I slowly moved closer and sure enough--there's a small amount of mucus beginning to drip from her vulva, shining in the light of the flashlight.
That was at 9:15 p.m. Unfortunately, Herb had oral surgery today and is on pain meds, and I'm still taking medication to help me sleep despite residual pain in my leg. So I'm afraid we won't be much use on Calf Watch tonight. I'm just going to trust that after 6 or 7 calves, Sara knows what she's doing. She certainly waited until Herb went away to have Siobhan--and she did it in two hours. I know she would rather be left alone to get on with the job, assuming tonight is the night!
I also know that this preliminary sign may not mean that calving is imminent, although Sara was a matter-of-fact, get-er-done sort with Siobhan, and tomorrow is Due Day.
Morning light will tell . . .