Showing posts from April, 2010

Shetland Geese, Shachah, lambs

Shachah likes to sleep on his back.  He no longer stays inside our fences. Here he has decided to sleep in the driveway.  I guess we'll have to get some invisible fencing to run along the front of our property so he won't go to the neighbors.  I like him to be able to guard our whole property, including my birds and the rams during the night, so I'm not sure about penning him up with ewes again after lambing is over.
Here Shachah tries to get to know the geese. I had let them out earlier to graze freely, but I was afraid they might give Shachah some grief and who knows how he would react to that. I didn't want anyone getting hurt, so I quickly set up this little pen and pulled out their pool.
I noticed the Shetland goose egg was missing the other day.  I'm not sure if the geese are breaking their own eggs, or if something is getting in there during the night. I gave them more bedding to cover up the eggs that are laid.  And I figured their swimming pool would give th…
Lana's lamb - her name came to me this morning - she will be Ebony.

Rhisa sleeping
Life has been so busy around here this week! In addition to lambing, we had a stock pond dug out in the 20 acre pasture of our Ogilvie land on Thursday.  I haven't seen it yet.  Hopefully I can get over there this afternoon. We'll need lots of rain to fill it up. Then on Friday we had some fill brought in to level out the paddock south of pole barn here.  We used all of our precious aged compost as topsoil over the fill - I should have saved some for my planters.

As long as we had all the big machinery here, we also had the pole barn cleaned out.   So that meant booting all the sheep out for the day. And it was a beautiful sunny day. Hannah found that a twin can come in handy as a pillow when mom's tired. She did a good job of keeping her babies out of the wind. They had a great time later joining in the lamb races.
The sheep waste a lot of hay over the course of the year and it really buil…

Twin Ewe lambs from Hannah

After a long night and an equally long day of watching and checking on poor hugely pregnant Hannah, twin ewe lambs were born last evening. One was born about 6:15 (about 15 minutes after talking with a vet on the phone) and the other about 8:45 (again about 15 minutes after talking with the vet).
The worry watch started when I saw that suddenly Hannah's bag had swelled up like a water balloon and was very warm.  I checked on her through the night every 2 hours.  She stayed inside the pole building so I knew she was close. 
Yesterday morning she was noisy and uncomfortable, bellowing from inside the barn. Not a happy girl at all.  I kept watching her and although she was quite uncomfortable, I couldn't see any regular contractions starting up and no water bag.  One or two possible contractions, but nothing definite.  Usually my girls lave their lambs out within an hour of acting this way. By late afternoon with still no sign of a water bag, I started worrying that a lamb could b…

Lana's Ewe Lamb and Lanora's Boy

River Oaks Lana had a ewe lamb all dried off and fed when I went out to feed the sheep on Sunday morning.  I think she may be modified, her skin looks rather brownish, but her fleece is black.  She weighed 7 lbs.  Only half as much as Lanora's ram lamb who was born Saturday morning.
I'm trying to think of a name for him. His sire is Granite, so I was thinking of maybe Slate, but then I thought maybe Glacier... Still thinking.  He was quick to nurse after birth and his was a trouble free BFL lambing except for that spurting cord.
Here he is Sunday morning, with his mom a full sister behind him on the left and yearling Shetland ewes, Freya, Cleo, and Freida on the right. He went out on pasture with mom and old sister Rhisa that day. I had to band their tails tonight, I just hate doing that.  Glad it's over now.

Another BFL Lamb

Just a quick post to say that our white BFL ewe, Beechtree Lanora, had her lamb this morning. It's a beautiful white ram lamb with a very blue head.  Look at those ears!  He's certainly not a pinkie.  :-)

His cord was pretty thick and when I clipped it, the blood just spurted out.  How scary!  I held it clamped tight for a while and then dipped it in some really thick and fast coagulating Iodine I bought from Premier.  It quit spurting quickly and it looks good now.  But I hope he doesn't get it bleeding again while I'm gone at work this afternoon. Lanora is being a very good mother, she licked him off and is agreeable to having her bag accessed.  I got both teats unplugged and ready for the lamb to find -- hopefully on his own this afternoon. :-)
This boy is white carrying color. And he is the last BFLlamb for us this year. Our two 2-year-old ewes didn't take last fall. I'm disappointed not to get any lambs out of Ward Harwell, he's a gorgeous ram.  Next ye…

Out & About - What a Difference a Day Makes

River Oaks Rhisa 1 day old and weighing in at 13 pounds.

You can see by these photos we need rain.  We got some the other night, but we need more to get the grass growing.

And for the Shetland lovers, here are a couple shots of River Oaks Freya.  She is a yearling black gulmoget with solid sides. 

I'm noticing the rich brown facial stripes in the black gulmoget ewes right now.

This is a very pregnant River Oaks Lana, she was in the rise at shearing and she looks a little raggedy now, but she's also got solid sides. I don't know if she's homozygous black or not. I would love to get a moorit gulmoget lamb from her.

First lamb of 2010

Rhyn was in labor when I got off work last evening. Good thing for me that she chose to labor right in front of the barn cam.

It was grain feeding time, so all the ewes were inside at the feeders.  Rhyn took a few bites, laid down to push and got up for a few more bites.  I decided to watch from in the house.  Suddenly I thought I'd better go check for two hooves and a nose. By the time I got to the barn, a newborn natural colored BFL ewe lamb was sprawled out on the hay in the narrow walkway between the feeder and the wall of the pole barn. 

Rhyn was licking her like crazy.  No Shetland lamb has ever had a more attentive mom than that!  I wiped off her face and sat back to watch the new mother and baby.

I've not been very excited about lambing this year, but there's something very special about witnessing those first quiet, gentle moments of life and the bonding of mother and baby.

While all the other sheep were busily eating their grain, old Bramble Cordelia came over ch…

Getting ready for Lambing and Easter

River Oaks Lana and Freida before shearing - rich black color from their Holly genetics. Lambing seems to have sneaked up on me this year. I've been going a mile a minute for weeks now and suddenly I realize our first BFL lambs are due in only a week!  I've got to put in an order to Premiere from some Kolostral, tags, Nutri-drench and a new battery for the electronet.

This is the time of year I do daily bag checks.  I'm comparing bag shots from last year with actual delivery dates.  And according to last year's photos, Rhyn should deliver pretty close to her due date of April 10th.  I'm hoping for my first sets of BFL twins this year.  But I will be plenty happy with healthy singles and attentive mothers.  We've got two BFLs that I'm pretty sure are bred, but they could still prove me wrong.  Not much for bags on them yet.

I had the vet out yesterday to look at Cordelia's eye and give Shachah his shots. Cordelia seems to have scratched her cornea. I got …