Scoot / Roo / SkippyRSS feed

Posted: Monday 26 April, 2021

by Rosemary at 11:19am in Smallholding No comments Add your own

Monday 19th April

The morning started cloudy but the sun soon came out and it was warm again.  It’s just cold overnight so I guess the soil isn’t warming up too well. And of course, it’s bone dry.

I potted up the dwarf French beans and put them in the polytunnel to keep the greenhouse clear for Dan and Andy to process comfrey.

Kit’s lambs are proving to be a bit of a trial and expert escapologists.

VAT return and year-end completed and off to the accountant. Yay, yay and thrice yay!

Tara and I took the ponies out for a walk and a “picnic”.

Tuesday 20th April

More happiness! We have rain. And a reasonable amount, too. Fingers crossed that the grass starts to get away.

Scoot had her lambs overnight – they’re black, a ewe and a tup. They were up bouncing around at 6am.

scootScoot and her two tiny but lively lambs.

One variety of runner beans has sprouted – Scarlet Empire, so they’re now potted up and in the polytunnel.

beansRunner beans.

We have an egg mountain.  I’ve chased up our contact regarding our pond project and I’ve emailed the company we get our lime and fertiliser from to get that organised.

Wednesday 21st April

We had a bit of a “lamba drama” this morning. When I went out at 6am, I found that Roo had lambed her triplets. One was dead, one almost dead and one not too bad – cold but its head was up. I wasn’t expecting her to lamb until the 24th and was planning to bring her in today. I brought the two that were still alive into the kitchen, after penning Roo in the barn. Our house has underfloor heating so it’s warm. I decided a nice warm bath was in order for the really shabby one – her legs were rigid, her ears and mouth stone cold. I really thought she was a goner. But you have to try, don’t you. So in the kitchen sink she went; I kept topping up the water with warm and I know folk say BFLs just want to die, but not this one.  She started to twitch and move in the water – once her mouth was warm, she started to suckle, and so I dried her and gave her some colostrum from a bottle. Her sister by this time was toddling round the kitchen.

bathLamb bath.

Dan rigged up the heat lamp over the corner of the pen and we put them out there; Roo likes them. She likes the stronger one (Rabbit) better than Fairy and we’re helping Fairy feed from her mum; she's still a bit wobbly on herback legs and she seems to think the teat is somewhere up in Roo’s groin but once latched on, she guzzles the milk down. So fingers crossed.

RooRoo plus two at 8am.


Roo2Roo plus two at 4pm.

Thursday 22nd April

It’s Bertie’s 12th birthday, so prawns are on the menu.

BertieBirthday boy with prawns.

Roo’s lambs are doing well. I’m not worried about Rabbit. I’m still latching Fairy on, but I think she’s feeding on her own now. Kit and Scoot are now out with their lambs.

Roo22Roo plus two at 36 hours old.

Friday 23rd April

Skippy’s lambed her single (tup) at 2am with some assistance. He was coming one foot and nose and that one foot wasn’t properly extended, so he had to go back in for a minute to get his legs sorted. Skippy didn’t like that bit much. But she does like him. He’s just awful stringy. She’s plenty milk though and he seems to know where the milk bar is. I have given him a couple of bottle feeds but he’s sometimes not that bothered. He just looks so skinny. It’s difficult adjusting to another breed.

SkippySkippy and her tup lamb.

Dan harrowed Far Ditch; just Near Ditch and Sheepfold to do in the first round, and then it all starts again.

Saturday 24th April

The second variety of runner beans has suddenly sprouted, so they’re now potted and in the polytunnel.  So many beans!

Dan sorted the irrigation in the polytunnel. As usual, it wasn’t as straightforward as we thought; the pump wasn’t working and the connecting hose was blocked – plus the pipes had been tangled up when we took them out.

irrigationWater pipe crochet.

But it’s done and the tomatoes can be planted out next week once it’s a bit damper underfoot.

irrigationWater pipe in place and working.

Since it was a lovely day, I put Roo and her lambs in the little paddock by the barn, but she was calling to the other ewes, so I decided to put her out with them. I let the cattle through into Far Ditch, along with the four non-breeding ewes  – it doesn’t look like much grass but they are very happy and I was quite surprised when they came in at 5pm this evening. Moving them gave me a clear run through Near Ditch to the field shelter. I wasn’t sure if Roo would disappear into the great blue yonder but no, she is a good mum and followed the lambs to the shelter and out the other side. She’s much more relaxed being part of the flock again.

I moved one hayrack into the field shelter for the breeding ewes and raked up where it had been.  Near Ditch is a bit of a mess – overgrazed and trampled. Hopefully. Mother Nature will restore it over summer.

Dan repaired the pigpen fences; the ark is getting its makeover next weekend. Then we had a spell in the classroom tidying up.

I had some plants delivered so these were potted up – still determined to have a nice garden this year. Or at least nicer than last year.

Sunday 25th April

More warm sunny. Dosed the breeding ewes for fluke and worms, ringed the older lambs.

Dan and I had a walk over Laing’s Field, where I was going to strim the rushes that were still underwater when the mulching topper went over it but since we’ll be topping it again soon, we decided to leave them. I did go down one side and  throw the debris from harrowing – chopped rushes and moss – over the fence. It would make nice bedding if you could bale it.

Spent the rest of the day just mooching about, tidying up and doing wee jobs around the place. Dan went shopping and to the skip and to Screwfix to pick up light fittings for the barn.

Just Alice to lamb now, but I don’t think she’s due until the 29th. However, 2am checks will continue until she’s safely delivered.



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