Wow, a great day on the farm. Not great for poor ewes and lambs as it was time to separate for weaning. The lambs are four months old and have had a lovely time with their mothers. But mums need a break now, as they will be back with the Ram in a few short months. Now they will get moved to a sparser field, not full of rich grass, so their milk dries up.
Minty and I got collection pens set up, hauling hurdles on the back of the Polaris Ranger, the most useful piece of equipment on the farm as far as I am concerned. There were two groups of lambs and ewes to sort. We did a fantastic job, with just a bit of help from hubby, Dan. (he was concentrating on his bees). The first group of 25 were moved from Nine Acres to the field next door, then on into the holding area. Not a problem!
The second group of 17 were in a much smaller field. Six of these were our trainees. They behaved and with their mums went straight into the pen. The rest decided to give us some exercise and that is when we called in Dan to help. We ran up and down the field a few times but they gave up in the end. It was a lovely day, not too hot so we almost enjoyed our sporting afternoon.
Once our trusty little sheep trailer was hooked up to the Ranger, sheep were loaded and shifted to the appropriate location. We have become much better at loading. The experienced sheep will jump right in. But never leave a tiny gap, as some silly lamb will squeeze through it and disappear to the other end of the field. All the sheep loaded without incidence (almost a first for that) and the lambs are now behind the barn, with the ewes near the house.
I feel so badly, as ewes and lambs bleat for each other. But it usually only lasts a couple of days, then everyone settles down.
Jo Stover has daily adventures on her small farm, together with her Highland cattle and Portland sheep, bees, a few hens, dogs, and some two-legged family and friends.