Harper's Farm Blog

Turning the Dream into Reality

Freedom April 3, 2010

Filed under: Daily Life,Farm Critters,Lambs,Sheep Shop — harpersfarm @ 5:03 pm

We took Marta’s abandoned lamb to a new home today. He is now with two other bottle babies on a farm just outside town. The little guy really hit the jackpot, because not only is he not going to end up in the freezer, but he also gets to keep his ramhood. The family who adopted him plans to use him as their new ram. He was a sweet little guy, and it was hard to see him being pushed and shoved around the pen by the other sheep. Now, he will be with other lambs, so he should make new friends and live a long life as one of the flock.

Back at home, we released the ewes and their babies from the lambing pen. All the lambs have their tails banded and the rams are castrated. They are spunky and full of life. The ewes are loving the freedom again. Lambing is the only time of year we really pen the girls up and they constantly vocalize their disapproval. Needless to say, it is much quieter when we step outside now.

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Marta’s Confusion March 31, 2010

Filed under: Daily Life,Farm Critters,Lambs,Sheep Shop — harpersfarm @ 2:06 pm

No matter how hard we try, we cannot get Marta to accept one of her twins. She started out fine, but something happened along the way, and now she is convinced that one of them is not hers. The only way she will let him eat is if we tie her up and put food in front of her, but even then she kicks at him. I decided today to let her out of the lambing jug and just keep an eye on her babies to make sure they are being allowed to eat. Her udder is pretty empty, most likely because her abandoned lamb would not leave her alone while she was tied up. Hopefully she will be able to build her milk supply back up and at least support her favored lamb. It looks like we might end up with a bottle baby this year after all.

 

This and That March 29, 2010

We had a weekend full of small projects. That is one of the best things around here – we are never lacking in things to do! We dug our strawberry rows and put 75 plants in the ground. 50 of them are June-bearers and 25 are everbearers. Next year should be a great year for strawberries!

We turned Liesel and her lambs out of their jug. The lambs are all playing and Liesel is happy because she dislikes being contained. Marta, on the other hand, has moved into Liesel’s old jug because she is now convinced that she only had one baby and is rejecting one of her twins. We are currently trying to trick Marta into accepting her lamb. I am hoping that she will accept him by the end of the week so we can turn all the sheep back out to pasture. Hopefully we will not have another bottle baby this year.

We picked up 8 cornish-cross chicks. These are the start of our meat birds. We will probably get some more in a couple weeks or so. Of course, this means that there are chicks living in the laundry room once again, which does not hurt my feelings at all.  🙂

 

The Grand Finale March 26, 2010

Filed under: Farm Critters,Lambs,Sheep Shop — harpersfarm @ 11:24 am

Marta finished off our lambing season this morning with twin boys.  Everyone this year had easy deliveries and gave birth to healthy twins!  What a great lambing year!  

 

And then there were… 4 March 24, 2010

Filed under: Farm Critters,Lambs,Sheep Shop — harpersfarm @ 5:48 pm

Liesel decided that today would be a good day to share her babies with us.  She had twin girls at about 3:30 this afternoon.  Both babies are healthy and mama is doing well.  Last year Liesel had a bonding issue with her baby boy due to an accidental fence separation, and we ended up bottle raising the lamb.  She has cleaned and loved both of her lambs this year, so it looks like they will bond as a family and she will be able to raise them on her own. 

 

Someday…

Filed under: Farm Critters,Lambs,Sheep Shop — harpersfarm @ 9:46 am

Last year, all of our lambs – four in all – were born within ten days of each other.  We are not going to be as lucky this year, since Gretel’s twins are now ten days old.  Liesel and Marta can’t possibly hold out much longer.  They are both large enough to house octuplets.  There were a few false alarms yesterday, with heavy breathing, grunting and a lot of talking from the others, but still… nothing.  Gretel is itching to get turned back out to pasture, but she must wait for everyone.  So, while I am half tempted to lay the girls down and bounce on their bellies, I know that they will have their lambs when they are ready and that our patience will be rewarded… someday.