Woe in the sheepfold?

The title is literal not metaphorical. Two more lambs were born today, twin girls to a first time mother. One, an all-white lass obviously to be named Bianca, has been accepted by mother. Disturbingly, mother is not so keen on the other, letting it feed but then ramming it quite hard to keep it away from her. Shortly, if I can get some help, we will try to cover the little one in some of mother’s smell. But I have that sinking feeling…

For the time being we have 8 lambs, and I would put money on one more ewe being pregnant so we may get up to 10! Anyway, meet Bianca and Non Nominata.

Bianca and Non Nominata

5 thoughts on “Woe in the sheepfold?

  1. Hello
    ewes can be and sometimes are fickle, even heartless to their newborns. Persuading the mother to accept her own offspring is very difficult and great cunning is called for.
    good luck and best wishes.

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    1. Hi John! You are right of course. I am tempted to excuse this ewe partly, as she is a first time mother. But I telepathically received your advice about cunning.

      With a friend we managed to secure the ewe, get the little one to feed from her for a good while, and then we rubbed a good deal of mother’s backside over her, and then we rubbed the rejected lamb together with the accepted one. When I left she was not ramming it any more, so maybe we fooled her sense of smell… maybe. The trio are in isolation for the night. The morning will reveal all I guess.

      The other mothers are super, and to have a field today with 6 lambs frolicking was pure joy. If we get the latest two to survive, and if the last ewe drops a pair, the 10 lambs will be a record for our little hobby flock, and will have more than doubled our flock in less than 5 weeks.

      Curiously, the accepted lamb is totally white, without even a tiny black patch, but she is not albino. She will stand out in the flock.

      Any advice gratefully received.

      Pax.

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  2. Hello again Fr Hugh
    you seem to have the right approach in dealing with this tricky problem.
    It is most important to give the rejected lamb the ‘right’ smell,an odour pleasing enough to the mother to fool her into recognising the lamb.Unfortunately this can not be done by dabbing on Chanell no7. A more earthy pong is needed and you have found a way to do this, so only time will tell if your intervention has succeeded.
    p.s. who sheers the jacobs i have heard that Aussies are great for this work.
    Cheers for now.

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    1. Hi John! No doubt about it, dabbing on a bit of bottle scent would be so much easier. Anyway it is in Mother Nature’s hands now.

      We get a chap called Richard in to shear them. I guess you could say he has a sideline in freelance shearing. Trust me, THIS Australian would be useless at it!

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