Sunday, 18 November 2007

Cool Weather arrives and the fat lambs move into the barn

This morning we awoke to sleet and looking from the landing window to see how Lotty was, she was no where to be seen. Thankfully she was in a hollow sheltering from the weather. So we had a rethink as to who goes into which paddock so that Lotty can have some shelter.
So..... the fat lambs have been moved into the barn in readiness for dispatch to the abattoir a week on Monday. We've weighed them again and we will weigh them again next weekend to see how much weight they have or have not put on. Moving them into the barn freed up their paddock, so Archie, Angus, Alex and Cecil have been moved into it. Lotty and Dougal are now in their paddock and have spent most of the day in the shelter eating hay. Lotty is so full of life we feel that she deserved some T&C to get her through the winter.
Tim has been busy this week, he's not been at the cafe since Wednesday, so he's been able to get the fruit area in the veg plot paddock fenced, so that gives us some more grass for the sheep to eat, he's nearly finished fencing the wooded area, but the hedge needs laying along one side, not a long job, and we were hoping to do it today, but not in this weather. Once it's done Lotty and Dougal will be moved in. Denise is going to order a small pig arc to act as a shelter for them. We already have 2 large pig arcs that the sheep use in the bad weather and we think another large one, as well as a small one, will give the sheep quite a lot of shelter for the winter.
Tim has also been putting in fence posts to enable the sheep from the back field access to the large barn. He will put some temporary fencing up in the barn, again the sheep will appreciate it when the weather becomes wet and cold.
Why do we worry about shelter for our sheep, well one year the sheep had no shelter as such and though they seemed to come through the winter well, the ewes only had single lambs. Proving that a lot of their food was being used to keep them warm. Since then we've made sure that, at the very least, the ewes have had access to shelter during the winter months and as a result our lambing percentages have gone up.
Whilst Tim was doing the fencing, the fencing plyers slipped and went into the fleshy part of his palm, just below his thumb!!!! Yes is did hurt and yes his hand is bruised and very tender.
As Tim has been at home for a couple of days, both dogs are warn out, Deefa as he spends all day outside with Tim, Holly watches from the bedroom windows, guarding the house. On an evening we have crashed out dogs.
Next week is Tim's last week working at the cafe, the reason for going has now out lived it's usefulness and there are still lots of jobs to complete on our smallholding.
More next week

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