Monday, April 12, 2010


Our sheep farming neighbours have roughly another six weeks of lambing to go. They started the process about the end of December.   I heard the farmers had  lost one ewe in the week, and from what I saw, one big lamb at the weekend.  Apart from that, they appear to have had a successful lambing so far.  In the last week there have been three sets of triplets, which are being taken gentle care of. The lambs, though small, as you would expect, are good looking ones.  The main 'orphans' this year, seem to be where a ewe has udder difficulties, or rejects one of her lambs.  The farmer's wife said that between the three types of sheep they rear, they'll have something like 1400 four-legged animals to husband, including the mums and some rams, till the next lamb sales.  With the sales in mind, the farmers sort out which ewes and lambs are kept, which rams stay intact for breeding and for selling on. Most first year lambs that are kept, are moved to other fields and are not bred from till their second year, when they are more able and physically matured.

Some years ago, an early lamb, (December-January) was, by August, interested in a well-endowed ram .  The two animals were in different fields though able to muzzle and sniff, I am sure. However, the well grown, but still agile young woolly lady jumped the dry stone wall  and love was requited.  As the farmer's wife was relating the story to me, she explained  with irritation, that it wasn't the ram's fault, it was "her's,  the lamb's fault.  If she hadn't jumped the wall and tempted him ............"   (There's an old moral in this tale).    The eventual birth was a good single lamb and the 'teenage delinquent' developed into a model mum.


Anonymous said...

I have to smile as I was reminded of the childen's TV programme Shaun the Sheep when I read this! Flighty xx

Anonymous said...

all's well that ends well, i suppose, leaping over walls to be with 'that special one' is a very romantic notion for a sheep!

ZACL said...

Hi Mr F.

I am not familiar with Shaun the sheep, although, I might have seen a picture somewhere. Am I right in thinking it was or would be a children's programme and what did Shaun do?

Delighted you got a smile from the post.


ZACL said...

I wonder what sheep do think about Ax. It would not be romance is our terms anyway. More like an animalistic primeval urge to procreate.

I was reminded of a book title "I Leap Over The Wall" by Monica Baldwin.

Anonymous said...

I've put the link to the Shaun the Sheep website over on your bcuk same post! xx

ZACL said...

Thank you. I have played with the link to Shaun.

The Shaun look-alikes were mostly with the other phase of lambing recently past. I did see though, a very white sheet with three black triplets. One I think, had a little white on its forelegs. I shall be interested to see how they develop, if they stay in my view long enough.