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Saturday, April 07 2018

It is done.

Nineteen. Nineteen Navajo Churro lambs safely delivered. This does not sound like many sheep to the commercial sheep rancher, but these are rare sheep and my first year lambing this breed, so I'm happy with that number. It has been a whirlwind month of new arrivals. There were more twins than I expected. A couple of "Who's ya daddy?" lambs that surprised me. There were more ewe lambs than I can possibly keep even though I want to keep them all. There were more ram lamb candidates than I expected. I had only planned to keep one or two ram lambs, now I'm afraid to band (castrate) many of them lest they later develop into something I want to keep as a breeding ram. I have favorites but I want to see how their fleeces develop.

We lost one I didn't expect.

The only white lamb in the crop. A perfect little ewe lamb. She was apparently rammed by another ewe. Whether it was intentional or whether she was collateral damage in a scuffle between ewes, the result was the same. The baby had a traumatic head injury. We nursed her for several days but when she showed no significant improvement we made the decision to put her down. And as we made that decision, another lamb was born. The last lamb of the season.

Now begins the season of babysitting lambs in the barnyard until they are big enough and fast enough to keep up with the flock in the big pasture. The ewes are impatient. They want to move to the better grass. Hay is boring. I watch the vultures spiral in a lazy circle above the flock. Nope. The lambs are still too small. Not ready for prime time. The pasture is too large. Too wooded. Too much brush. It's too easy for a predator to snatch and run before a Livestock Guardian Dog can get there. So for the time being, lambs will cavort in the barnyard while the mothers gaze longingly through the fence.

And I can finally get some sleep.

Posted by: forensicfarmgirl AT 05:22 pm   |  Permalink   |  2 Comments  |  Email
Congrats on the all the happy outcomes and especially all the ewes. Still sorry about the loss of the wee one. Now go take your well deserved rest. Briar's and Brambles jobs are just cranking up! (Maggie sends her regards to all)
Posted by donna black on 04/07/2018 - 08:26 PM
Thank you! I am just now catching up on all that lost sleep. Tell Maggie that I have her penciled in for the role of Corpse #2 in the movie.
Posted by forensicfarmgirl on 04/10/2018 - 06:00 AM

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