Sunday, February 6, 2011

Snow Miser

Now that it is apparent that Veronica and Peppermint Patty are pregnant - we still had 7 ewes to give birth - until last night. I've been watching the development of their utters. Veronica is close, and I thought she might be next, but not quite ready. Gertrude and Daphne are so woolly that I can't see. And they are both sort of scared of people, so when I try to look - they run off. As a matter of fact, I spend so much time checking, that my daughter now walks up to the little lambs and tries to look. Apparently, it's important to check out the animals' behinds.

Anyhow, I was taken by surprise when Larry announced we had a little lamb born last night. Also quite surprised, from the size of Daphne, that she had only one. Sticking with out holiday special theme, this one is named "Snow Miser". and yes, it's a ram lamb.

He was having a little nap after getting a belly full of food from mom. These two are locked in a stall for the day, since it's cold, with a new blanket of snow last night.
Daphne actually did have twin ram lambs. "Heat Miser" was still born. She didn't even clean it off. My heart is broken for the poor little lamb that never had a chance, and even though there was nothing we could do, I still feel like I wish there had been something I could have done. From what I can tell, there was a good 6-8 hours between lambings. That is way too long. I know sometimes it takes longer than I can imagine, but it's usually 30 minutes to an hour between lambings - long enough for mama to lick the first one clean. This little guy didn't even get that far. We weren't there, but we don't believe he was alive when he came out. If Cornelius could manage, on his first day, to almost freeze, and have to come in the house to warm up for 4 hours - then this guy could have handled a few hours in a warm barn with his mama ignoring him. Daphne is a pain in the butt, but she's never abandoned a lamb before. And of ALL the sheep we have, she is the LEAST willing to let us help with anything. I think Snowy will be fine, but my heart breaks for the little lamby that never had a chance. Goodnight little Heat Miser.

This picture deserves a post of its own. But since I can't possibly want to recall how we got this thing delivered, and then how we stood it up, all you get is a picture. And the knowledge that no one died in the process, although the risk was there. That being said, this sucker makes our other grain bin look like a coffee tin. Now we are really in the bird business!
Speaking of birds, here is our Royal Palm and Black Spanish tom showing off, with some Bourbon Red hens hanging around.