Monday, May 15, 2017

Day 8/9 Home Stretch

We are more than half way done lambing with about 137 ewes left!! With more sheep and lambs getting turned out everyday the barn is starting to get empty! HALLELUJAH!

  Yesterday started with more good news Steve has been adopted by a sheep mother who adores him (how could she not?). However, Steve is still adjusting to being a sheep again as he is giving up his faith healer/spiritual being identity. Despite his foster mother's constant affection he has not accepted her as his mother and still calls to us when he hears our voices. As hard as it is, we have avoided walking near Steve's pen to allow him to fully adjust and accept his new momma.

 Steve and his new mom                               Steve trying to hang out with us rather than his new mom

The remaining ewes are keeping us busy. In fact we delivered 73 lambs in the last 24 hours. We are constantly in search of clean, empty lambing jugs as space is getting tight with so many ewes lambing at once. We have been forced to build temporary jugs at the ends of the ewe pens for the ewes to lamb out in and then transfer them to permanent jugs. This gives us time to make transfers, sanitize each jug, and drink more coffee. 

Jess assisting a ewe in a temporary lambing jug

At some point during the day one of the ewes sat on and suffocated her lamb. In an effort to reduce the number of ewes nursing triplets one triplet from each ewe is adopted out to a new mom that had a single or lost a lamb. This is ensures that each lamb is well fed as ewes only have two teats and cannot always make enough milk to support the growth of each lamb. The tricky part of the process is convincing the new mom that the lamb is hers. Otherwise, she will reject it. Adoptions are normally done at the time of birth but due to unfortunate circumstances we had to go another route to replace the ewe's suffocated lamb. Helgi skinned the dead lamb and made the potential adoptee a skin "sweater" (inspiration for the Silence of the Lambs?) so he would smell like her lamb. SO COOL.

Lamb skin sweater on lamb adoptee 

Through the chaos of lambing Snaedis lived one of our worst fears and dropped her phone through the slats in the barn floor into the manure pit. With the help of Helgi and "Big" Steve she suited up in waders and a head lamp and was lowered into the pit through the floor trudging through waist deep manure. She successfully retrieved her undamaged phone.  

Until next time,


The view walking back to the house 


  1. I spent far to long trying to get that jpg to play...

  2. holy cow!! So much is going on over there for you guys!! im so glad you are learning so much!

  3. What an incredible experience you are having -- thank you so much for "taking us along"!