Monday, March 28, 2016

2016 Lambing Season

I almost hesitate to write this entry about the 2016 lambing season, for fear of jinxing it. So far, lambing has gone very smoothly. I have two orphan lambs and have had to deliver a few breech births, but otherwise, lambing has gone extremely well. I currently have 56 lambs on the ground.

First born lambs

The mature ewes should finish up over the next week. I'm not sure if one ewe is pregnant or having late lambs. The yearlings will lamb after April 1. All eight are bagging up.  Then there are two yearlings that should have May lambs.

My favorite (and one of my best ewes) Miss Piggy had quads:  three ewes and a ram. They were the first lambs out of my new ram Eddie. I purchased Eddie at the 2016 KHSI Expo from Ed Julian (Ohio). I am letting Miss Piggy raise her quads. So far, so good.

Miss Piggy and her four

The orphan lambs were the result of a 4 year old ewe having triplets, but only accepting one lamb. I put her in a head stanchion for a few days, but wasn't making any progress. Last year, she had twins and only accepted one lamb. She has to go. I don't normally have much problems with ewes owning up to their lambs. This ewe is the exception. I hate getting rid of her because she is one of my few 31% Lacaunes.

The orphans are nursing off a bucket. They aren't requiring much work on my part. I put milk in the bucket a couple times and day and clean the bucket and nipples every other day. They are doing quite well. Don't know why I don't do this every year. It's so much easier -- and better -- than bottle feeding lambs. I switched milk replacers, too. I am feeding a milk replacer from Pipestone.

Two orphan lambs

I had fifteen early lambs, complements of two ram lambs that had jumped the gates prior to the planned breeding season. The first lambs were out of an RR registered red ram lamb. He sired two sets of twins and a single lamb. The other nine early lambs were most likely sired by a Triplet registered Katahdin ram lamb that got in with the ewes when I was out of town. He had 24 hours of fun!

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