Friday, April 13, 2007

Lambs R Us

About this time, I'm wondering... What were we thinking???? last year when we bred so many ewes! We have lambs in the barn, lambs in the front pasture, lambs in the side pasture and lambs in the Hilton. We have Scottish Blackface Lambs, we have Shetland lambs, we have Gotland cross lambs - and - we still have 9 more ewes to go! At least these should spread out over the next several weeks instead of coming all at once.

The count is 26, and it's been exciting. Bessie, of course, started things out with her 3 near the end of March. They're growing very nicely. Sorcha is the grey katmoget ewe on the left, Elora is the moorit gulmoget ewe in the center and Franjean is the moorit gulmoget on the right. What a handsome group!

Next to deliver were the AI girls. Interestingly enough, they delivered **by breed**. The Finns (bred with Gotland semen) went first on April 2 and 3 with two sets of twins and two sets of quads. One of the quads was stillborn, so the total is 7 rams - 6 black with white and 1 white, and 4 ewes - 3 black with white and 1 white. Tucker is below with her troop of 4.

Niblet's white twins are completely different looking than their relatives. They are very long boned with close, extremely curled fleece. Just look at this boy's legs!

After about a week they've filled out some, but still look quite different from the rest. Kibbles is on the left and sister, Bits, is on the right.

The other 50% Gotlands look more like this sweet ewe. Freckles is her Finn mom.
Next to lamb were the Scottish Blackface. In 2006, we had the first North American Scottie born from imported Scottish semen. This year we have 7!!! One of which is a second generation, 75% imported bloodline. Below is EverRanch Genesis' 75% UK ewe lamb in her first day of life.Ewe One, my partner in the Ladies Lead photo at the top of the blog, gifted us with triplets this year - a ram and two ewes. They're shown below.

Uh oh. What's that on the ram's leg??? I found him on Monday morning with toes pointing 90 degrees out. Sometime in the early morning, he got stepped on, or? and broke his lower leg, both tibia and fibula. Well, off to the vet we go and they splinted him from toe to groin with instructions to keep him "quiet" for 4 weeks! At first we had him by himself, and brought him out to mom for nursing, plus tried to train him to the bottle. Then after hearing Gail Former's (of Underhill Shetland fame) solution, we put him in a jug with his two sisters and Mom in the adjacent jug. This week we've put them to Mom every 4 hours for nursing. He's getting around better, and when we're worrying less about him getting caught and reinjured, we'll open a creep gate into Mom's jug. Below he shows his nursing form.

Hortense, the BFLx, was next to lamb, with Bubba - a 14.5lb monster white boy. He's also 50% Gotland. After Hortense, Electra and Asa gave birth to their twins and single 50% Gotlands. Electra's twin boys keep her jumping and Asa's girl, born on Easter afternoon, was christened "Bunny" by the assembled family. Val topped off the week with a single ram lamb - moorit gulmoget - immediately named "Rool" to go with half brother/uncle "Franjean". Those photos are "somewhere", so here's Elora with Franjean and Sorcha to anchor this post. Mom's taking very good care of these three!


Juliann said...

Franna, the lambs are absolutely beautiful. I've always admired the Scotties, they sure are cute!

Franna said...

I love lambing time of the year! They are all so cute. :-) Their absolute joy with everything is something to lighten the heart and soul. Thanks!