Sunday, May 1, 2016

Day 1 NOTE: Some images may be disturbing to some viewers.

HELLO FROM ICELAND!!!!!! Note: Some images may be disturbing to some viewers.
Our plane arrived safely around 5:30 am on April 30th, and our day began right away. We stopped at the grocery store on the outskirts of Reykjavik and it was very interesting to see the major differences in the varieties of meat and packaged goods! The first thing I asked Snaedis to translate for me was a package containing smoked meat off of a sheep head in a gelatin!
One thing I noticed was that the shopping carts moved from side to side as well as forward and back, making it very easy to move out of the way when other customers were trying to get by, but made it very difficult if maneuvering downhill!

The landscape here is absolutely incredible. As we were preparing to land we noticed that there were no trees anywhere to be seen! It was like preparing to land on the moon! But the hillsides are gorgeous.

Once we arrived at the house and unloaded the groceries, I was feeling quite tired and laid down for a nap, which lasted longer than I thought! I woke up 5 hours later at 3 pm! I headed down to the barn and found out that there was a set of triplets born!

So much happened yesterday that it is hard to recall all the fine details. We had 12 lambs born in total, and there was 1 still born that never fully developed. In the picture you can see that the eyes never even developed, and the bones were almost like rubber. When Snaedis went in to feel where the second one was (this one was a twin) she could feel that something was very different, and when she pulled her hand out of the birthing canal, her hand was covered in a deep brown, almost rusty color. She explained to us that this almost always means there was a death. As unfortunate as it is to see such a thing, it is something that happens from time to time, and I have found that if I just accept it and appreciate that we were able to get it out without causing the ewe any harm, then all is well.

By the end of the day I had help deliver 4 lambs, 2 of which needed some serious assistance (they had only one hoof forward in the birth canal, while the other remained behind the pelvis). My legs were incredibly sore and I could tell the circulation in my hands was a little lower from the contractions of the sheep! One set of twins had such big horns when they were born that they needed a lot of assistance!!!   
Scott feeling for the lambs positioning This tool had a loop on the end to hook behind the horns/head
Finally out!  Check out  the size of those horns!!

Overall, it was a pretty incredible introduction to Iceland :) - Becca


  1. Becca,

    Incredible start! Keep them coming! I will post the link to multiple sheep groups tomorrow - we"ll see how popular this blog gets.

  2. Great job, Becca -- just keep 'em coming! I posted the link to the Maine Sheep Breeders Association, the ISBONA page and our 4-H group this morning. The comments are already coming in and are so positive!!

  3. This is such a great experience for you guys! ENJOY!