We put the rams in on October 26, 2014. This was one week earlier than my comfort zone, but I was leaving the next day for a two week trip to Seattle and California, so I decided to push the limits. Sure enough, Mother Nature showed me a thing or two and the first lambs this year were born out in the field in so much snow that I couldn’t get the truck or 4 wheeler out there so slowly trudged my way out to congratulate the mothers and tag the lambs on paths that the cattle and sheep had made. We didn’t lose any due to weather, and I was grateful that at least part of the flock (those who need shearing or first-time moms that I need to keep an eye on) were close up by the barn. The lambing percentage this year is truly amazing. Lambing percentage is number of lambs divided by number of ewes. Including the ewe lambs (who rarely have more than one but this year we have two successful twin mothers) they’re hitting the ground at 200%. Among the mature ewes, singles are less common than triplets this year. I don’t really have a good explanation other than to think they went into breeding season in good shape, the winter wasn’t super hard on them, and Craig kept them well fed with hay all winter. So, although I’ll be happy when the last 19 ewes have lambed and I can spend some more time cleaning my house (a shepherdess’ house gets pretty grundgy during lambing time!) it has been a very happy lambing time and I am grateful.
The cattle are dong fine, too. Although all winter Craig unrolls round bales out in the fields for the cattle and sheep, this time of year he puts the cattle hay in round bale feeders so they won’t damage the fields so much. I think they kind of like this lazy way of eating. Cows aren’t due to start calving until mid-summer and they still have their big calves from August with them.
Well, that’s the news from the farm