a journal of thoughts, photos, and projects from a simple way of life
Thursday, April 4, 2013
A few new faces
We have had 7 lambs born in the past few days, so we have some cute faces to share. These twins was from another first time mother, Girlie.
Same twins here with Momma... and what a good momma she is.
And speaking of good mommas, sweet Myrtle had her babies Tuesday. I have been watching her for several weeks now, because she has been off to herself a lot the past few weeks, not coming in to eat as normal, and acting as though she was going to lamb at any time. Looks like maybe she just didn't have a lot of room for food in there, packing all these babies. So far, she is taking care of all these little guys (yes, all boys) and she is a very attentive mother.
Sadly, it doesn't always work that way. I have been really pleased with the mothers caring for their babies, and have had only a few occasions over the 5 years we have had sheep where a mother didn't take her lamb. This adorable lamb, Nells, was born Tuesday as well, and her mother (first time mother) left her in the field when she had her second lamb. I had been out to check on the sheep and noticed that Myrtle was in the shelter and was talking quite a bit. I went to check on her and I couldn't tell that she had started labor, but felt the lambs would be coming soon. (of course, I had been saying that for weeks with her) I went to check on her a little over an hour later and she had all 3 lambs and was cleaning them up. I took them to the barn and noticed what looked like a new lamb with a mother in the pasture where the other sheep were grazing. It was just about dark, and I was surprised that another sheep had lambed, because they had all been grazing just a short time earlier. The lamb looked small to be a single, so I started looking around in the field and there about 20 feet away was Nells. She was laying lifeless on the ground and my first thought was that the lamb had died during birth. I reached down to touch the lamb and she had just the slightest movement. There was hope for Nells.
I brought her to the house and started to warm her up. The wind had been blowing outside, and it was somewhat chilly. Her feet felt frozen. She barely moved. She couldn't hold her head up, and barely opened her eyes for that first hour. I honestly didn't know if she would make it. After being in the house over an hour, she began shivering, so I put the hair dryer on her again. Once she warmed up, she came right to and held that head up, opened those eyes and started crying for some milk! I had some colostrum in the freezer (thanks Marlene) and she ate. After she got back on her feet, I took her to the barn to try to reunite her with her mother. I had high hopes of the mother taking her, even though several hours had passed. long story short, she didn't. It is so hard to see a lamb being rejected by her mother, but I am not giving up yet on that. The mother is still in the barn, and I am taking the lamb down often for feeding (I just hold the mother) Wyatt is a whole other story. He wants a bottle lamb, and hasn't held back in letting me know how he feels. When we take the lamb to the barn, he gets upset and says "that's not fair mom!" ?? where does he learn to say things like this, and what does a 3 yr old know about being fair? I have walked in the room and seen him rocking her in his little rocking chair, and then saw him sitting on the floor, reading her a book. I guess it wouldn't be the worst thing in the world to have a lamb in the house for a while, but if the mother would somehow take her back, we could surely take the rocking chair to the barn with the books, right?