Lots of excitement around the farm this past week, including lambs from Joni and Tippy.
We now have only two more ewes left to lamb. The girls are all back together now with everyone moving through our home pastures. With the help of our neighbour’s pastures, we have had the opportunity to really let the forages grow before setting the girls loose on our fields.
Joni had a whopper of a white spotted ram lamb who tipped the scale at 11 pounds.
Tippy was another late night lamber and had a ram lamb ( 9 lbs, white spotted, horns) and a small ewe lamb (5.5 lbs, white spotted).
It was time for one last check on the girls before heading to bed.
Frosty’s ram lamb
Black ram lamb with spotting – 8.5lbs
With new lambs from Tansy and Isis.
white ram lamb with badger face, 7 pounds
Black ram lamb with white spots, 9 pounds
White ewe lamb with black and brown spots, 8.5 pounds
These lambs were actually all born on April 1st. We have now been a week without any new lambs and have resumed bagwatch.
Left to right: Joni’s beautiful white, spotted polled ewe lamb and Cocoas black, spotted and polled lamb ram. Their wool is becoming quite long and is amazingly soft. Shearing their quality wool this fall will be an exciting event.
In our endeavor to raise lambs this year we’re keeping track of their weights, keeping an “eye” on their eyes, and inspecting their fleece for quality of wool. So much goes into ensuring you raise a healthy flock. They also received their monthly dose of apple cider vinegar, a supplement commonly under appreciated.
One of the reasons we’re tracking their weights is to select for rate of growth in a medium sized breed of sheep that can reach market weight within 5 months. This weight should range between 80lbs and 120lbs depending whether it is male or female and is the first of three traits we select for. This year we hope to be able to have market lambs ready in August which will be raised on grass alone.
As for keeping an “eye” on their eyes this is an indication of their parasitic load, which will affect their ability to gain size and produce an excellent fleece. By combining this with 4 other measures: Body condition, Tail, Jaw & Nose/Coat, you can keep a close watch to determine whether it is necessary to apply a de-worming agent. If you wish to read more about selectively de-worming sheep click: HERE
Icelandic Sheep are known for their quality of wool. A beautiful clean fleece may be spun from a freshly shorn sheep provided that the sheep has the genetic disposition, proper nutrition and good health to produce one. This is the second of three primary fundamentals that we select for when determining if a specific sheep line is worth keeping.
Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions.
Here are the sheep we’ll have with us to the Castlegar Spring Fair this year.
Daisy – 2013 Ewe Lamb
Violet – 2013 Ewe Lamb
Joni’s 2014 Ewe Lamb
Joni’s 2014 Ewe Lamb
Cala’s 2014 Ewe Lamb
Wren’s 2014 Ram Lamb
Hope to see you all there!
Our final ewe lambed out this afternoon though it was definitely much more challenging that any of the others.
This lamb wasn’t presented properly in the birth canal and we were required to give a bit of a lending hand. In the end it all worked out and everybody is doing great.
1. Black, grey and polled ram lamb – 10lbs
Two new little ones this morning and they’re identical!
1. Morrit, white, spotted and polled ram lamb. – 7lbs
2. Morrit, white, spotted and polled ram lamb. 8.5lbs