Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Hay is cut! Lamb updates

Our hay is cut and drying. We've had hot humid weather, but now when our hay is supposed to be drying out, the weather has turned unseasonably cool and the clouds won't leave. Oh well, at least the sheep are more comfortable.

Don't these two look sweet? It's Dot and Derra, they are two-year-old Shetland Mules. I didn't get much interest in my Shetland mule sale package, so I've decided to keep the adult mules and Peppy the Ile de France ram. I'll go with the market lamb plan for 2010. I'll just have to cut back the flock somewhere else...
Speaking of Peppy, there he is in the photo above. He's such a cutie with that big fuzzie head, and he's very good natured. But he's raring to go for breeding season already.
The other day while I was at work, my wether and my new BFL ram lamb (Ward Harwell in the photo above), broke out of their pen and got in with the rams. The ram collection includes 2 year old BFL (Granite), yearling horned Shetland ram (Bo), and Peppy the yearling Ile de France. Fortunately, when I found them there wasn't much blood (the little there was came from Peppy's head) and they all seem to be getting along fine. That's a relief because it's one less pen to feed and water - at least until I wean the lambs.

Our two Shetland ram lambs are showing some growth of their "chocolate chip" horns. I'm see it more in Leonie and Bo's black lamb. He's only 3.5 weeks old and his chips are starting to fatten and get a little taller, he may be modified...I'll keep watching to see how he develops.

This is a photo of Cordelia and her Ag grey ram lamb. He's nine weeks old now and his chips are smaller than Leonie's ram lamb. I love his great little tail and nice straight back end. I know those horns could take off at any time, so I'm watching and keeping my fingers crossed on this guy. Here's another shot of his head - not sure when I took it though.I really wanted some grey in my flock again and this guy could be used on my F2 & F3 Holly ewes.

That said, I love Cordelia's Ag gulmoget girl too, She's definitely staying. Her name is Camille and she's so friendly. I love her intermediate fleece. Her tail is looking very nice now, it's smaller than in this photo taken a while back. It's developed that distinctive Shetland kink where the wool ends and the hair begins.
And Hanah's gulmoget ewe lamb Cleo is also staying...She's super friendly. Don't know why she's got her back feet so close together in this photo, but at least you can see her coloring. Below is a shot of her fleece under the light area on her side - she doesn't have the characteristic side dusting, hers is more like shaela underneath.
And probably both of Hattie's twins, Freya and Frieda will be staying. Above is a photo of Freya, taken with a flash the other night. I'm feeding Timothy hay from last year, so she's wearing some. She's a solid sided black gulmoget at this time. And Frieda is solid black.

Oh heck, I think all the the Shetland ewe lambs are staying this year! Above is a shot of Cleo and Freya's tails. It was taken a couple weeks ago, Freya (right) is smaller than Cleo (left).

And here is a shot of the Shetland goslings from the other evening. They are growing in their feathers now. Oh yes and they get the run of our fenced in backyard. I've fenced off my garden and we keep the garage door closed so they don't hang out too much in there.

Okay, now I have to buckle down and get a newsletter and grant proposal written for the art group and get my booth inventory made. I need to mulch the garden too and of course the hay crop will need to be brought home and stacked n the barn...Arghhh, there's just not enough time in the day!

6 comments:

  1. You are right. This weather is bizarre. At least with the cool we have wind. The hay is drying, sort of. Good luck with your. Beautiful crop of lambs!

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  2. I love the very sweet photo of Dot and Derra. Your lambs are looking great!

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  3. Everyone looks great.
    I'll bet Cordelia's ram lamb stays small scurred, he doesn't have much growth for his age. He'll make a handsome flock sire.
    So are all these Harrison lambs?
    Sorry your mules didn't sell. I can't move these Cheviots, either.

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  4. What a beautiful flock you've developed, Becky! I respect your ability to switch to "plan B" when the sale of the cross-breds didn't occur.

    Enjoy the cool weather!!

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  5. Yes, Juliann they are all Kimberwood Harrison's get, except Leonie's black ram lamb who is sired by River Oaks Bo (whom I think may have aberrant horns). And I mixed up his birthdate, he's actually 7.5 weeks old - duh! I'll just have to wait and see how those boys develop.
    Going with the market lamb plan for next year seems like the easiest thing to do - that way I can set a date when they all leave and not have to worry about finding good homes for them. I've decided I just won't breed many ewes for purebred lambs and definitely no ewe lamb breeding. Some my mature girls will get a rest. It's still going to be hard to get down to around 20 sheep for winter.
    We're stacking hay today and it's 76 degrees. :-))

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  6. Oh my gosh, I just realized I mixed up those two black lambs AGAIN! Leonie's little black ram is now 8 weeks old (born May 9) and he was definitely sired by Kimberwood Harrison. River Oaks Bo sired the little black ewe lamb that was born on June 4th. All I know is those last two stragglers keep getting mixed up in my mind. Sorry. :-)

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