Monday, April 30, 2012

A time to grow

Two ewes will have late (May) lambs.  Another yearling may also lamb.  Hard to tell. If she's bagging up, she's just starting to. Otherwise, lambing has been over for a couple of weeks.

Now, the lambs are busy growing. Even the bottle babies are getting big, especially the triplets.  Mutt (now called Muttley) survived and is gradually doing better. She has a good appetite, but is still not as strong (or playful) as she once was.

I look forward to the end of bottle feeding. I don't mind feeding the lambs, but I grow tired of mixing milk and feeding at night. The triplets have a bucket for feeding, but Muttley still needs bottle feeding.

Quad-born, 3 year old ewe with her triplet lambs

The lambs are starting to eat a lot of creep feed.  In fact, I am gradually adding more pellets and whole barley to the mix.  Though cracked corn and soybean meal are more easily digested, the lambs tend to prefer what their dams are eating.  I've noticed a lot of lambs chewing their cuds and some lambs are getting stuck in the narrowest opening of one of the creep gates. I better make an adjustment.

Unrelated twins

As usual, the grass is getting ahead of the sheep.  It will need mowed to control weeds and keep all the plants from going to seed.  There's still a fair amount of clover in the fields.  I keep two groups of ewes and lambs in at night to encourage creep feeding. The other group of ewes and lambs have an outdoor creep feeder, which the lambs visit frequently.

The ewes are still getting a fair amount of grain. I will start to cut their grain back soon, especially the ewes with older twins and singles.

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