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Yes, April is also a BIG month for lambing. In the fall we put the ram in the pasture with the ewes for 60 days. That's much longer then most farms would leave the ram with the ewes but our primary ram, Mi Sueno, has my husband speaking for him...get my drift? The primary downside of leaving Mi Sueno in with the 28 girls longer could be that our lambing might take longer. Mi Sueno is not a romancer, he's a, he's a, how should I put it? Wham bam kind of ram? How do we really know that...lambing was DONE in less then 30 days.
Anyway, basically 149 days from 1st exposure to the ram you start preparing for the possibility of lambs. Over time you learn tell tale signs and you get used to your girls.
As the days progressed we were gathering sometimes 6-8 lambs per day. Mind you, were a small operation! Each lamb happily greats the new one(s). Each mom is different, some very protective, others experienced and calm others know they have a responsibility and they'll give off their lamb specific bleat to let the wee one know where they are but other then producing milk and feeding it they're kind of like..."What? I'm over here!" Regardless, It's an amazing process to behold. I am sure some would accuse me of being too imaginative with this whole process. Maybe I am to some degree but mostly I'd disagree. Each of these animals is unique, with personalities and feelings.
This year we were blessed with 37 beautiful lambs and only one didn't make it. Sad fact, they say 10% loss isn't unreasonable. So, as farming goes we'd have to chalk it up to a very good year even with the loss. For those that follow us on Facebook you know about our loss, it was a very tough day. After 6.5 hours of hard labor she gave birth to the biggest lamb we've ever had on our farm. A real beauty! We checked the mom for milk and made sure they had bonded and a few other aftercare protocols. They were both exhausted! He didn't make it through the night. You beat yourself up, what could I have done, what didn't I do/see...this the hardest part about farming to me. We face a lot of life and death realities around here. From the raccoon eating our chickens to the lamb that struggles to be born only to pass before his romp through the green pastures. We often cry but mostly we carry a heaviness for awhile. Then we find ourselves standing on the fence line watching 36 lambs jump and play without a care in the world. They gather in a bunch, all of them, and like a swarm of bees they run, kicking up their heels, happy to be alive!
That's where April went!
These harsh realities of nature are not easy yet we know we are in a close relationship with Mother Nature and knowing her we feel grounded.
Nature reaches out to us with welcoming arms, and bids us enjoy her beauty; but we dread her silence and rush into the crowded cities, there to huddle like sheep fleeing from a ferocious wolf. Kahlil Gibran