12 March 2007

Apple Jack Creek's very first lambs

Early Sunday morning, our first lambs arrived! We have twin ewe lambs from our 'mutt sheep ewe', Cookie. The hugely pregnant Icelandic ewe, Natalie, is still waddling around and apparently in no hurry to lighten the load on her back.

Sunday morning Union Guy offered to go out and do morning chores while I got breakfast going. All of a sudden, I heard hollering from the pasture: I looked out the window and saw Union Guy gesturing at something. "What?" I yelled. "Lamb! Baby lamb!" he shouted back. At first I thought he meant the bottle lambs had gotten loose ... then finally my addled brain registered the message that one of the ewes had finally given birth! How exciting!

A few minutes later, Union Guy was at the door, holding a shivering baby lamb in his arms. Apparently there were two lambs, one that the mama sheep was paying some attention to, and one who had lain forgotten in the hay. He'd heard a weak baa and realized it came from the direction of the sheep shelter, where he found a second tiny baby lying all alone. She was pretty cold, but not completely chilled, so we warmed her up and got some milk into her.

This happens sometimes with sheep ... they have one lamb and are so busy looking after it, they don't realize they have a second one that needs them too. We struggled throughout the day to get Cookie, the mama sheep, to accept both lambs, named Cookie Crumbs and Cookie Cutter. We did manage to get some colostrum into both, but Cutter, the chilled baby, was unable to stand and clearly needed our help.

Helping the sheep is what the shepherds do, so we kept Cutter inside and encouraged her to drink warmed milk replacer. She was very weak, so much so that she could barely suck the bottle, and I wasn't sure she'd make it . The Boy stayed home to look after her today, though and by midday she was taking the bottle much better. So, although I think we're destined to support another bottle baby, things are looking up for Cutter.

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous8:11 am

    Too, too precious!!! Baby lambs are cute when I can look at the pictures and not have to care for them! :-) Farm life is hard work but has many fun/educational things, too! Congratulations on your new babies!!

    Love, AC


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