Friday 30 March 2012

2 sets of twins

Two sets of twins were born in the early hours of yesterday morning.

Scottie No3 with her Gimmer and Tup lamb

Anya with her Gimmer and Tup lamb

Both mums and lambs are doing well and this morning Tim let them out of their pens to join the rest of the ewes with their lambs out in the field and the sunshine. Only Ariadnne left to lamb. She is due on Monday, but tonight we have penned her up just in case.
We had to call the vet to the gimmer lamb born to Scottie No5 as she has a limp. We've given her a shot of antibiotics, but the limp has got worse. The vet has diagnosed mild joint ill, which needs a much stronger antibiotic than we have. We will have to keep this lamb and her mum in the barn for the next few days to see if she is improving and to give her, her daily injection.

Monday 26 March 2012

Early morning and later afternoon lambs

This little gimmer lamb was born at 5.30 this morning after I'd fed the pet lambs. Tim had to deliver the lamb as she was just very tight, and she took a good bit of getting going, but tonight is up and about and looking fine.
Later this afternoon Tim had to call our local friendly farmer Pete to help deliver these two tup lambs. The first one was upside down and his head had dropped down so Tim was having difficulty getting him out. The second one was breech, so there is no way this poor Scottie ewe would ever have delivered these lambs naturally.

Sunday 25 March 2012

2 sets of twins & a Spring Fayre

Late on Friday evening Scottie No1 gave birth to twin lambs, a gimmer and a tup lamb. Unfortunately I didn't get any photos of these lambs as the weather was so nice on Saturday morning Tim marked them up and let them all out to enjoy the sun. There is nothing better for young lambs than being out in the sun.
On Saturday I went to Botton School's Spring Fayre and the balmy weather we are having at the moment bought lots of people out. I'd taken my spinning wheel, which always creates some interest and though I did get a good bit of spinning done, I also had a good day for sales.
This morning, not long after we had let all the ewes out of the barn, I noticed one of the Scottie ewes licking the ground and that can only mean one of two things. She's about to lamb, or has already lambed?
When we got to the top of the field, there she was with a very newly born lamb. So I had the job of picking up the lamb and then walking backwards, carrying the lamb in front of the ewe, at a height so that she can still see it, back to the barn walking bent over!
Once we had her penned up with her lamb, it became apparent that a 2nd lamb was about to be born, but after several minutes of struggling nothing was happening. So Tim had to investigate what was happening. The 2nd lamb was coming out backwards, with it's legs tucked under it and twisted! I had to lay on the front of the ewe whilst Tim attempted to sort the lamb out, whilst the ewe tried to push it out. Fortunately he was able to get the back legs straight and he pulled the lamb out backwards, very quickly.

One of the tup lambs, snoozing in the straw, with a full tummy

The 2nd tup lamb, looking a little unsure. But he'd just been woken up by his mum, pawing him.

Tonight 4 of the last 5 ewes that are due to lamb this week are all penned up in readiness, so no more having to bring newly born lambs and their mum's back from the top of the field into the barn.

Friday 23 March 2012

More triplets and pet lambs

We finally got to bed at 3am this morning as just when we thought it was safe to leave the sheep, Allium started to go into lamb. Her first lamb was born just after midnight, with the final lamb being born at around 2am. Allium had 2 gimmer lambs and a tup lamb. This morning we removed the tup lamb into the pet lamb area.

Here is Allium with her remaining twin gimmer lambs.
This is her tup lamb in the pet lamb area, he's called Ivan.

Last night I said that we had hope that the Scottie ewe that had had one gimmer lamb would "mother on" Abi's tup lamb. Well she didn't and last night he became the first inmate of the pet lamb area, under the heat lamb. But then later this morning we had to move the Scottie's gimmer lamb into the pet lamb area as it became clear that this ewe had no milk. We suspect this is because her lamb was born 7 days early.
This is the Scottie's gimmer lamb, with very floppy ears and very soft fleece, who despite her tiny stature, mugs the other 2 tup lambs for the milk bottle. A born survivor!

And finally this is Abi's tup lamb in the pet lamb area, he's had such a traumatic first day of this life, but in spite of this is by far the most vocal of the pet lambs.

Next lambs are due on Tuesday, but with sheep anything can happen

Thursday 22 March 2012

Triplets and a mothering on! - Hopefully!!!

This afternoon Abi had her lambs. All 3 of them. She'd started to prolapse and had, had a "spoon fitted. She managed to deliver this gimmer lamb on her own. She has been called Isobel by our god daughter Abbi, who Abi is named after.
This little gimmer lamb, called India. Had to be delivered by Tim and was still in her water sac, which took some tearing apart to release her, but she seems not to be too traumatised by her ordeal
And finally Igor, the tup lamb, who hopefully we have managed to mother on to a Scottie who has had a single gimmer lamb around 9pm this evening. When we left the barn around 10.30 the Scottie mum seems to have taken to Igor, along with her own lamb. The next 24 hours will tell.

Tuesday 20 March 2012

Just when you are not looking.....

Today we've been concentrating on Abi, who we brought in last night as we were not happy with her and sure enough this morning she had started to prolapse. Thankfully not too badly and Pete (our friendly farmer) has fitted her with a "spoon" to hold everything in place. Abi's due Thurs/Fri so not long for her to go.
But as we have spent the day checking on her and not really looking at the sheep out in the field, well no one is due for a couple of days. It was only when we went to do the evening feed and round everyone up that I noticed we had 2 Scotties with twin lambs!!!! Scottie 712 had, had her lambs this afternoon out in the field. They were both lovely and dry but we have brought them down into the barn for tonight so that in the morning we can mark them and put rings on their tails.

Scottie 712's Gimmer (ewe) lamb

Scottie 712's Tup lamb

If the weather is fine, and once we're sure that they are not bothered by the rings on their tails, they will all go back out into the field with all the other sheep. Sunshine, fresh air and grass does the new lambs a world of good.

Saturday 17 March 2012

A Market, twin lambs and house viewings

Today has been one of those days. I was booked to go to Botton Farmers Market, as always on the 3rd Saturday of the month.
As Frea was due to lamb on Monday, but has been looking very large and uncomfortable, we decided to pen her up yesterday, just to be on the safe side. Tim did the 4am check, nothing was happening, but when we went to feed and let the chickens out at 7am, Frea was very restless and not interested in her food. By the time we had fed up she was showing strong signs of giving birth. I made a cup of tea and took it to Tim in the barn and then went off to Botton, but not before ringing my fellow smallholder Jayne, asking her to pop over in case Tim needed help.
Well he certainly needed help! There were legs and heads in some very strange positions. So additional help was called on. Pete, one of the local farmers, was rung, just as he came in for his mid morning coffee, to come and help. He managed to sort the legs, heads and bodies out and quickly delivered Frea's twin tup lambs.

Frea with her lambs

The little lamb laid down, was the first to be delivered and he's a bit snuffly, so has been given a shot of antibiotics, he also has a "wonky" leg, due to weak ligaments. We know from experience that given a couple of days, it will sort it's self out. But all in all 2 very big, heavy lambs.
I came home from Botton Market early as we had a house viewing this afternoon, which took place, thankfully between the rain showers. But whilst Tim was dealing with Frea and her lambs, the estate agent rang to say that we have a viewing on Sunday afternoon as well. We are certainly getting viewings, which is good, especially as our smallholding is not being actively advertised by our estate agent. It's just on their web site and in their shop window. Let's just hope that sooner or later one of the couples that want to buy our smallholding can sell their respective properties.

Wednesday 14 March 2012

Things happen when you have lunch....

Today I had a trip over to York for a dental appointment and as one of the Scotties was due to lamb tomorrow. Tim stayed at home to keep an eye on her.
He checked her at 10am and 12am, nothing happening so he decided to have some lunch. When he went out to check on her again at 2pm, a little head peered out from behind the ewe, followed by a 2nd head!

A pretty little gimmer lamb

A little tup lamb

Let's hope that the rest of the ewes lamb as easily as Missy and this Scottie have. Next ewe due is Frea on Monday so we will bring her into the barn on Friday to be on the safe side and we will be on lamb alert from Sunday.

Sunday 11 March 2012

A surprise delivery!

This morning when I went to let my chickens out and feed the ewes. Missy didn't appear for her breakfast and normally she is the first to be in the barn.
I saw her loitering by the shelter in the field with a very wet and bloody rear end and by her side was a lamb!
This young man was not due until Wednesday, or possibly Tuesday morning.
It took him a little while to get used to his extremely long legs and enormous feet, and we won't mention the ears

But on the whole he's doing well and tonight is trying to bounce around the pen he and his mum are in, in the barn. Though the weather is nice, I think he and his mum will be in the barn for a couple more days.
The next ewe is due on Thursday, so we will bring her into the barn tomorrow morning.

Wednesday 7 March 2012

Getting Ready for Lambing

At the weekend we strawed and disinfected the barn down and built 7 pens to put the ewes in as they are due. A pen between the 2 hay racks - this can be a favourite one by the ewes as they can help themselves to the hay!

Here are the 4 main pens and the ones that will be used the most. Each pen is 6 x 6 giving the ewes plenty of space with their lamb(s).
First lambs are due on the 14th March by Missy. Who is looking as if she is only expecting a single lamb. But you can never tell.