A few weeks ago you might have seen the picture of me with our first born lamb, posted on the Casa Ceoil Instagram page (make sure to follow!). Well, we now have more than one little lamb!
We have always been lucky with our lambing and never had any real problems, touch wood! This year we had one lamb born seemingly a bit premature, that’s the one on the picture. But it was on a fairly sunny day and I found lamb and ewe just after the birth. They were brought into the shed and away from the elements, to be able to rest and bond in peace.
The next three lambs were a bit harder to get into the shed. One of the ewes was understandably aggressive and tried headbutting anyone picking up the lamb; the other, being our most shy ewe, had twins and didn’t want to leave the birthplace of the lambs. In a very slow pace, with plenty of breaks and ewe-bullying, we finally got them down to the shed. As the weather turned and the night temperatures fell, we were very happy to have our newborns snug and warm with their mothers, resting on fresh straw and with plenty of food and water.
We are expecting more lambs from the ewes born last year, but when these will arrive is unsure. I am sure that a very experience shepherd could tell you exactly when, we instead rely on keeping them under regular supervision. Fingers crossed that all will go as easy with them; there is a bit of worry as these will be first time mums.
The ewes and lambs have until recently been separated from the larger flock, and we have been bringing them in into the shed for the night. The maternity ward has been our back garden, where they have been keeping the grass low. As the weather has improved they are now with the rest of the flock and staying out at night.
Apart from their love of decorative bushes and flowers, sheep are better than a lawnmower and leave the lawns beautiful. In the back garden the lambs take shelter from the rain by getting in under the girl’s trampoline. I am just waiting for one of them to climb up on it and have the time of her life.
The flock is currently visiting our neighbour’s back field and are slowly making a lawn out of it. Just yesterday, as I went to feed them I discovered another newborn lamb. This one, unlike the previous lambs, has been born in smashing weather and was left out as the nights are mild and the days are beautiful and sunny.
Seeing a newborn makes you realise how fast they grow, as the older lambs look now very healthy and strong. Right bullies as well, as they push the little one around. Thankfully it still has the strong instinct of staying around her mum.
Lambs are lovely little creatures, inquisitive, playful, energetic and resilient. Just watching them playing and jumping, all white and fluffy, would make anyone smile.