Thursday, March 7, 2013

It's officially spring. . . time.

Of course it isn't actually spring yet, though with the time change coming up this weekend winter's days are numbered. Going into this winter I was very nervous that we were going to have a repeat of the 2011/2012 winter. You remember - the winter that never was! After that 'psuedo-winter' we battled ever insect and disease that nature could throw at us, most of which would not have survived a normal Maine winter. But they partied it up at the lack of snow and cold only to come out with a vengeance this past spring.

Dyna wearing her winter coat during 'Nemo'.

Fortunately, this year has already proved very different. Early on - no snow, no cold, no winter. Then enter January and February. The lake froze over and we are getting repeatedly pounded  by snow (more on the way tonight). This is good news for bug-kill, and annual precipitation totals, but now, I am ready for spring, and dirt, and green things - such a malcontent!

So how dare I say that it is 'spring time' now? Well, In the autumn we harvest vegetables and in the spring we harvest lambs, and boy are we harvesting right now. There are (were) five pregnant ewes in the flock this year. Of those three delivered - One ewe delivered right on time and two others decided to string us along in anticipation for a while. To join our goat kids we presently have two ewe lambs and a ram lamb. Pretty exciting. With two ewes left to deliver, and one of them known for throwing twins, we are hoping for a total of six lambs this year.

Now, we are a production farm and sadly not all of our lambs can stay with us. This year and every year for the next five years, we will be keeping one ewe lamb to absorb into our breeding flock until we reach our target goal of 10 breeding ewes. Life would be simple if we just had one ewe lamb every year and the remaining were ram lambs, but that isn't how it works often so we have to choose. This years decision will be tough because we have one beautiful ewe lamb who is perfect in form and function to the breed standard. Our second ewe lamb was born with a fun genetic hiccup - She has spots!! It is rare enough to get a black lamb out of this breed, but I have never seen a spotted Southdown. Oh decisions, decisions. It may be that we need to poll our readers to help choose who to keep - American Idol style.

Hannah - Our first ewe lamb of the season.
On that note, I caught wind that there is a school in Augusta, Me that has been following our blog for some time now. To them we wish a warm welcome to our readership and I will offer that we have started skyping with classrooms in our area and would love to have the chance to meet you all for a virtual tour (though an in person tour would be way better). Also, I need you guys and gals to work on some good boy names and girl names because we will be needing you to help name one of the coming lambs! We are expecting deliveries next Wednesday and the following Sunday so get crackin'. You can find my contact info in the Staff section of the side bar under "The Farm Guy".

Alrighty, until next time here are some photos for you:

The Crew conducting monthly sheep maintenance on the boys.
Carl braves the snow.

Hannah and her hand made sheep coat. 

Callie and Annabelle - The apple doesn't fall far from the tree.

Our ewe lamb Poppy just minutes old and born with spots.

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