Diary

Groundhog day in the lambing shedRSS feed

Posted: Monday 5 April, 2010

by Rosemary at 3:58pm in Sheep No comments Add your own

Juno and Jinx lambed last night. Jinx has been bagged up for days and, just yesterday, I noticed Jinx was too. Nothing doing at bedtime, I set the alarm for 3am.

Jinx had a single tup lamb, same as last year, but much smaller than Buddy was. Juno had twins - a tup and ewe - but the tup lamb died, despite my best efforts at ovine CPR. Last year, Juno had two tup lambs, but one was born dead. The other is Dickie, our companion wether.

Jinx's lamb seems bright, has a pretty full belly and is almost silent. Juno's lamb, Milly, doesn't seem to have got the hang of latching on and Juno isn't being awfully co-operative, although she has plenty milk. At least she's not knocking the lamb away.

So the lamb's a bit bleaty and I'm making sure she gets a feed every 2 hours - Juno's pretty relaxed about people, especially those with a bucket so she's happy enough for me to latch the lamb on. Hopefully, in a couple of days, Milly will be able to take care of things herself.

Both ewes are eating and drinking so hopefully they have survived the births. My aim this year, as last year, was to end the lambing with three ewes, each with a healthy lamb. As my experience grows, I'll up the ante, but for now I'm happy with a modest target.

Funny, I used to work on a farm lambing 600 ewes and it wasn't as stressful as this. I suppose I had nothing else to think about other than doing what my boss told me - I didn't have any decisions to make. And with 600 ewes, I didn't get attached to any of them.

Thank goodness for the field shelter though - last night and today, it was been wet and windy, although not desperately cold, but not great lambing weather. Being able to keep the ewes and lambs indoors for a couple of days is great - for ALL concerned.

I don't know what I'll do at the new place. I'm thinking to use part of the open barn, just for some pens and as a place to run them in at night for ease of observation.

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