News Letter: Winter, 1998-99

So what's wrong with this picture? Well, for one thing, lambs are supposed to pay MORE attention to mom than to this guy standing over them. This can mean only one thing: bottle babies! Oh! NO! Bottle Babies!

See, that means there is something wrong with mom...never a good thing. The lamb on the right is Barkley, the one in the middle is Rachel, and the one on the left is Pumpkin. Most farms just get rid of their "trouble makers", but after a few years we get attached to each other and I can't seem to send them off. So, our tired old ewes that weren't supposed to have anymore lambs, all gave it one more go.

It's true, this could not happen unless the ewes were with a ram. Unfortunately, we have had some accidental breedings in the past few years from very young, not yet weaned ram lambs. Never anything like this past year. The little guys got to absolutely every one of the ewes back in July and August. We don't mean to breed until October, so that we can shear in February and lamb in March, after the really cold weather is past. We began having lambs just before Christmas and went on until just last week. This first week of March is when we were to have started lambing, not finish.

The good news is that we only lost one lamb during the week of 20 below cold weather that we had in December. The others have come through quite well, all things considered. For our Rent-A-Ewe folks we will feature a bit about their special ewes and the lambs they may have had over this winter. Here are Maudie and Alice...

Dear old Alice still has not had a lamb, but she continues to wow the judges with her fleece at the wool shows.

It was Maudie that lost her lamb when it was so cold. The good news is that her ram lamb from last year, Kermit, is doing quite well. He has not faded to brown as I had hoped, but he is still quite the pretty boy.

Here is Janine and her lamb this winter/spring? ... Iris. Iris is the most unusual spotted lamb we've had. I would call this reverse spotting, meaning that she is a white lamb with black spots, not a black lamb with white spots (our usual spotting).

Here is Nona and her lamb Nathan. This is the first time ever that Nona has had a single lamb instead of twins in all of her 9 years. He gets double her attention and milk. I don't think he minds.

One last shot of the lambs in the creep. We ended up with 11 black lambs, 9 white lambs and Iris (is she black or white?).

The Mountain Bluebirds have already come back which MUST mean that we WILL have spring ... even though winter really isn't over. I can't say that we've had spring lambs either, as they all came too soon. It doesn't hold them back from running and jumping and racing around the pasture, even if it is still brown and crunchy. With some more snow and rain it will go green again. Looking forward to those green pastures ...

Gleason's Fine Woolies

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