How can nearly four weeks have gone by since we put up the previous post announcing the first lamb of 2014? It’s been a whirlwind of activity here, with guests visiting, and lambs, and two public Open Barn days, and… yes, more lambs!
We now have 40 lambs, four of which are bottle babies – or “bummer” lambs. Mouse (pictured at right) is a ram lamb that came from another farm. His mother rejected him shortly after he was born (she was startled by some goats, we were told), and he came to live at Leaping Lamb Farm in order to become a daddy ram when he grows up. Mouse is a Soay sheep, so he’ll also impart some different genetics into the Katahdin/Dorper mix we have here.
Our other bottle babies include the little woolie boy in the photo above – #94 there on the bottom left – who couldn’t seem to figure out how to eat on his own in the beginning. He hasn’t been rejected by his mom, though, and he’s learned to feed partially with a bottle and partially nursing from the ewe. The little girl pictured in the photo on the top right, above (standing) was rejected by her mother in a complicated case of baby stealing and then confusion as to who was actually hers. It seems the ewe probably took another ewe’s lamb – a twin – as her own, then when she had her own twins, she figured the second one to be born didn’t belong to her. We’ve named this incredibly sweet little girl Molly. The final bottle baby is an orphan lamb. He was a difficult birth for the ewe, and she sadly developed an infection after a day or two. He’s doing great with the bottle, though.
(Photo credits: Top left, Pat Kight; all others, Paul Deatherage)
We opened the barn up to the public for two days this month (most of the photos in this post are from those events), and we had really wonderful turnouts and such a good time with everyone who was able to make it. The first Sunday, we could not have asked for more perfect weather. Some of the visitors took advantage of the sun and picnicked down by the creek… that is, until they were rudely interrupted by some horses and a donkey looking for snacks! Unfortunately, the good weather didn’t hold long enough for the second Open Barn day, but we still had some brave souls make it out, including a couple who traveled from Vancouver, WA! Thanks to everyone who made it out to the farm for either day – we really appreciate the time you spend with us!
Thanks also to the photographers who lend us the use of their images to help us show off all the animals and the farm. You help us to focus on the beauty here and not just the chores we see that need to be done.
Speaking of chores… time to go out and bottle feed some lambs! We’ll have some more photos from around the farm in the next post, so stay tuned!