Wednesday, July 16, 2014

It's That Time Again

Monday was weaning day for the ram lambs.  They are plenty old enough to be away from mom and the moms are ready to have them leave.  It took all day Monday to separate them from the main flock, move them in two trailerloads to the upper barn, bring back a group of yearling ewes who had been in the upper barn for lack of space in the lower barn around lambing, put down fresh bedding, scrub water tubs, stop for lunch, etc.  Oh, and we had rain.  Lots of rain with wind - that's a sheet of rain being whipped up over the barn roof like snow.

We kept the ram lambs locked in the pens in the upper barn overnight so they wouldn't somehow get into trouble with the big boys when we weren't around.  You never know - it pays to be careful.  Off and on all night we could hear the lambs calling and the ewes answering back.
In the morning we let them out to mix with the adult rams.  They were mildly curious about some of the more bold lambs but mostly they ignored them which is just what we wanted.  Everyone trooped out to pasture but without a routine or mom to tell them where to go and when to go there the little boys kind of wandered around in groups grazing and exploring and sometimes calling for their mothers. 

"I'm lost."
"Have you seen my mother?"
Everybody wanted to be in a group, but nobody wanted to be the leader of the group so there was a lot of aimless milling.....but it was a nice day.

"I'm not milling.  I'm going to sit right here until mom comes....or until I get bored.  Whichever comes first."

The lambs are growing quite well and should continue to gain on new (to them) pasture.  Here's a sturdy young Cotswold.

"Why are you taking a picture of my butt?  Weird-o!"
It's a nice place to be a sheep.
Last night we didn't hear a peep out of the moms or the lambs.  They've all adjusted that quickly.  I"m sure they would run back to each other if given the chance but neither group is pining. 
And now it's summer.


  1. Aww. I love the 'I am lost' guy. Beautiful fleece, too.

  2. We separated lambs from the ewes a couple of days ago. We have a couple of ewes who put up a fuss and the lambs made a lot of noise the first night, but they are adjusting quickly.
    Lovely pics

  3. What a wonderful post again, about your "sheeps". I love the one who says he'll just stay there until his mom returns or he gets bored, whichever comes first! You did a good job weaning those lambs with the least possible stress to mothers and babies. I remember my mum saying that when she weaned every one of us four children from being breastfed, my dad took us for the night, and put us to bed. Then we couldn't "smell" mom's milk. Your system worked on the same principle. Have a great sheepy day, Jo

  4. I imagine the ewes heaved a collective sigh of relief... :)

  5. Soooo cute, one or two could come love with me.