Saturday, March 24, 2007

back to work

this was the first official weekend that we went back to work on three dog farm. not that the daily chores aren't work, it is just that during the winter all the 'projects' come to a halt and then come to life again when everything thaws out.

so, the first thing on my list for spring projects was to get ready for freyja to lamb. first, we had to put a gate on the sheep shack so freyja and lamb can be separated from the boys if necessary and i have a handy catch pen for spring shearing, vaccinating, etc. (for instance, today i was finally able to catch snorri and get that halter off of him).

i set up their real water tub and filled it. i hope i am not cursing myself when i say no more carrying buckets of warm water 2x day. at this point, we should be safe from the tub freezing solid. the sheep did really well over the winter and i REALLY hope there is a lamb in there (freyja is pictured top looking pregnant (i think!) and below the trio: freyja, pattur (ram), and snorri (freyja's wethered twin).

i collect the little german (schleich) animal figures that they sell at our farmer's co-op. last week when i went to buy the sheep gate, i noticed they had little white lambs so i bought two to go with the ewe that sits on my kitchen window sill. i thought of it as well wishing for twin lambs. freyja is a twin and so is pattur, so the genetics are in my favor.

i also placed an order for some sheep supplies. i ordered a lamb feeding tube, milk replacer, a bolus of probiotic colostrum replacer, some nipples, and iodine for the umbilicus. i'm sure i will not need any of the lamb feeding supplies, but i know i'll feel better if i am prepared for the worst case scenario. i also ordered this book. i feel pretty confident about my knowledge of lambing but it sounds like a good book just the same. i attended a women's lambing week a few years back at the heifer project and i really learned a lot and had hands on experience assisting ewes, bottle feeding lambs, dipping navels, and tagging ears.

tonight we finalize our fruit tree and seed orders. time to start building the coldframes.


farmer, vet and feeder of all animals said...

Your lady is more than likely pregnant.I don't know of many rams that can't do the "job" :-)
You can catch her and see if she is bagging up---just feel her milk bags. When she is getting closer (sometimes up to about 3 weeks before) she will start to develop her udder. When it gets really really big---she will have her babies soon. Good Luck! By the way---good book purchase.

rooster said...

thanks! i saw them breeding in early december and then never again. so, i deduced that she never came back into heat. i am expecting i should see a late april early may lamb.

i'm looking forward to the book! glad to hear it is a good one.