Friday, April 11, 2014

Shepherdess Notes: Lambing Part 2




The word  to describe Lambing 2014-"inconvenient"

Sunny, warm, not busy....no lambs.
Rainy, cold, swamped, exhausted...lambs!
That basically describes how the last week has went on the farm.


The ewes have handled it much better than I have. Mike and I were both sick for over a week. I just wanted to sleep!  I may have been able to if the weather had cooperated, but with the freezing rain we had and the colder temps I was outside doing barn checks every hour.

We have quite a few first timers and sometimes they are just clueless and need more help figuring things out.
We also have more "seasoned" ewes.  They are great moms, but this winter was hard on them, and lambing just made it harder. They pulled through, but not without some extra TLC. We are supplementing some of their lambs with bottles.


Yesterday we gave shots, docked tails and put the first group of lambs in the barnyard.
That is always a sight to watch.  Ewes trying to identify her lambs, lambs calling out for their moms. Everyone running around as if  the sky if falling. It takes about 15 minutes for them to realize that the only thing that has changed is their surroundings.




We have had a rough start, but overall it has went well. Our lambing rate is lower than I would like-about 148 Percent. But we haven't had any losses yet, so that is a big plus.

About half of the ewes have lambed. The weather is improving along with our health so this next week should go much smoother. 

And speaking of lambing, Delaney just came in from feeding hay and said a ewe in is labor..
Gotta Go!

Have a Great Weekend!!

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Thursday, April 10, 2014

The HomeAcre Hop #65


2014 Doe Kid (Georgia)

I have been on a blogging break. We are in the middle of lambing/kidding and it has been a little hectic.

It didn't help that the weather was cold and damp and Mike and I were both sick.
This week the weather has improved and Mike and I are feeling a little better.

For the next couple of weeks I will probably just be posting the HomeAcre Hop on Thursday's and a Friday Sheep post, until we are finished with lambing.

I am sure Spring is finding you all busy, I hope you can find some time to share your post with us!!

HomeAcre  Host


Kathi@Oak Hill Homestead
Nancy@Prudent Living on the Home Front
Ann@ Summer Acres
Jenny@Black Fox Homestead
Lisa Lynn@Self Sufficient Home Acre
Mary@Homegrown on the Hill
and Me @Clearwater Farm Journal



Each host will feature her own picks from the posts linked the previous week. that means your chances of being featured are even better! Visit each of the blogs to see if you were featured this week! (Don't forget to link back to one of our blogs if you'd like to be featured!)


Featured Post:
Covered Raised Beds from Garden Up Green






Congratulations!
 We love to read encouraging posts about homesteading. Please stop by to congratulate the featured blogger this week. If you were featured, grab the button to display proudly on your blog.

Be sure to check out the HomeAcre Hop Pinterest Board where we share our Hop Favorites each week.

Clearwater Farm Journal
Featured



You are invited to share your original posts on: Homesteading, livestock care, gardening, environmentally friendly farming, self sufficiency, preparedness, off grid living, healthy recipes, home remedies and herbal concoctions, green living, homeschooling, food preservation, environmentally friendly crafts and home decor, photo posts of natural living and homesteading subjects! Now that’s a lot of information to share! If it fits any of these topics, we want to hear about it.  There are just a few little rules to follow:
  • Family friendly posts only. 
  • Please, no posts dedicated to advertising products.
  • Link as many appropriate posts as you’d like each week. Older posts are great too.
  • Please visit as many of the other posts as you can and let them know you found them here!
  • If you wish to be featured, you must link back to the hop (on either host’s blog) with the button, text link, on the post, your side bar,or blog hop  page and please follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Google + and/or Pinterest!
  • Please follow us by email! You’ll receive notice when the hop is open for business. 
  • Only share content that you have created.
  • Please remember that the whole idea of a blog hop is to visit the other bloggers and make connections and friendships…so share the linky love!
  • By linking to this hop you are giving us permission to link back to your post if you are featured. We will also include one photo from your post in the interest of sending visitors your way 
                 To keep things fresh on the Hop PLEASE do not share a post that you have previously linked up.




Any post that does not fit in the guidelines will be removed. Thank you for participating!!

 Clearwater Farm Journal












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Friday, April 4, 2014

Shepherdess Notes:Lambing



As I mentioned earlier this week, Spring lambing season is upon us.
You never quite know what lambing is going to bring, (other than lambs)

Monday morning, Mike was doing a lamb check before he left for work. He found one... in the ram pen. Okay, you don't see that everyday!

It was still dark, we both listened for a mom in distress, nothing! Took a flashlight and the lamb in the pasture. Walked around the ewes, no one made claim to the bleating lamb.
Oh Boy!
Took the lamb in the barn, looked him over, he had been cleaned off, was dry, and seemed healthy.
Gave him a dose of Nutri-Drench (vitamin, mineral supplement) put him in a pen next to the Romney ewe and her lambs. Not much I could do, until the sun came up.

After sun up, I headed out to the pasture, didn't take long to find the ewe who showed signs that she had given birth.  Young ewe, first time mom, makes a little more sense.
Put her in the stall with the lamb, who was an feisty  (good) and started to nurse right away.
We had the ewe tied up so she couldn't complain. First worry, is getting colostrum into the lamb.
After he was finished, we untied her and waited too see how she would react to the lamb.
She was fine. Lamb was fine. Happy Ending!!



Normal lambing- you will  find lamb/lambs with the ewe, hopefully dried off and nursing! (ideal)

I  will usually move the lambs and ewe at that point.  If the weather isn't the greatest, we move them to a pen in the barn. If the weather is nice, I move them to an outdoor pen. 
The reason I move them to a pen is to give the ewe and lambs some bonding time. With them being out on the pasture, we have had lambs wander off after other ewes,(or into the Rams pen) or you get nosy ewes  bothering the new lambs. 

Most of the time, a ewe will not follow you anywhere, but when you have one of her lambs, she will.
We have this nifty sling that we can put a lamb in and carry the lamb along side of us. The ewe sees the lamb and will usually follow right along.

Once we have the lamb/ewe in the pen-
We look the lambs over.
Dip their navel in iodine (tincture of iodine, 7 percent)-an ounce of prevention....
Weigh them
Check the ewes udders and strip the teats if needed.( A ewe gets a wax like plug in her teats)
Get the ewe water/hay

Done!

Ideal, not always what we get, but what we always hope for!


newest ewe lamb, a few hours old


Have a great weekend!


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Thursday, April 3, 2014

The HomeAcre Hop #64

Tunis Ewe Lamb


Spring Lambing is upon us. The next few weeks will be busy.
We have been sorting and skirting fleeces, washing wool, planning a garden, pruning fruit trees,
getting ready to put up some interior fences, etc...

Spring is a busy time around here.
What does your Spring bring?

Share your homesteading, homeschooling, and homemaking post!

I want to congratulate our E-book Winners!
Randi- Freda- Talina- Cynthia


HomeAcre  Host

Kathi@Oak Hill Homestead
Nancy@Prudent Living on the Home Front
Ann@ Summer Acres
Jenny@Black Fox Homestead
Lisa Lynn@Self Sufficient Home Acre
Mary@Homegrown on the Hill
and Me @Clearwater Farm Journal



Each host will feature her own picks from the posts linked the previous week. that means your chances of being featured are even better! Visit each of the blogs to see if you were featured this week! (Don't forget to link back to one of our blogs if you'd like to be featured!)


Featured Post:


Making Herbal Teas for Good Health from Gentle Joy Homemaker





Congratulations!
 We love to read encouraging posts about homesteading. Please stop by to congratulate the featured blogger this week. If you were featured, grab the button to display proudly on your blog.

Be sure to check out the HomeAcre Hop Pinterest Board where we share our Hop Favorites each week.
Clearwater Farm Journal
Featured



You are invited to share your original posts on: Homesteading, livestock care, gardening, environmentally friendly farming, self sufficiency, preparedness, off grid living, healthy recipes, home remedies and herbal concoctions, green living, homeschooling, food preservation, environmentally friendly crafts and home decor, photo posts of natural living and homesteading subjects! Now that’s a lot of information to share! If it fits any of these topics, we want to hear about it.  There are just a few little rules to follow:
  • Family friendly posts only. 
  • Please, no posts dedicated to advertising products.
  • Link as many appropriate posts as you’d like each week. Older posts are great too.
  • Please visit as many of the other posts as you can and let them know you found them here!
  • If you wish to be featured, you must link back to the hop (on either host’s blog) with the button, text link, on the post, your side bar,or blog hop  page and please follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Google + and/or Pinterest!
  • Please follow us by email! You’ll receive notice when the hop is open for business. 
  • Only share content that you have created.
  • Please remember that the whole idea of a blog hop is to visit the other bloggers and make connections and friendships…so share the linky love!
  • By linking to this hop you are giving us permission to link back to your post if you are featured. We will also include one photo from your post in the interest of sending visitors your way 
                 To keep things fresh on the Hop PLEASE do not share a post that you have previously linked up.




Any post that does not fit in the guidelines will be removed. Thank you for participating!!

 Clearwater Farm Journal



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Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Up to My Elbows in Wool





I have spent the last two days sorting and skirting the natural colored fleeces.

Mike has made the job much easier by building me a new skirting table.



As you can see it does a great job of letting second cuts and debris fall through.
You can also see that sorting and skirting the fleeces is a messy job.

The natural colored fleeces are done! I put the individual, picked fleeces in plastic bags for short term storage. I will start washing them tonight.

I can't tell you how much easier this job was with the new skirting table, I love it!

If you want to know more about skirting-
http://www.mittenstatesheepandwool.com/2013/04/what-do-you-do-with-all-that-wool_28.html



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Monday, March 31, 2014

Spring Lambing Has Begun

Romney/Border Leicester Ram Lamb/twin



First lambs, just before midnight, Saturday night.
Two Romney/Border Leicester Ram Lambs weighing in at 11 pounds.

So it begins.

20 ewes to go....
We haven't had this many ewes lambing. in quite a few years. We will have more than enough lamb cuteness to keep us busy.

I am very happy to say, that it looks like the weather will be cooperating, at least for this week.
It actually feels like Spring out there.

We will keep you updated. You know how Delaney loves to take lamb pictures.

Any farm babies keeping you busy?
 

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