Tuesday, March 13, 2012

getting ready for lambing

For the last few days, I have been getting ready for the up-pending lambing season. This year -fingers crossed-I will be lambing out eleven ewes. Lambing should start about mid-April.

 Maddie has managed to get the weanlings de-wormed. She has also separated the two of them out of the pen with whom they had been sharing with my ewes. Maddie and I also managed to separate Lawrence and moved him in to another pen. We did kick Charlie out with the horses, but Brigan was showing our tiny little stud that he was the dominate one in this herd. So Maddie put Charlie back in with the ewes and Ezio. More so for his own safety and our piece of mind. Charlie is head over heels in love with the buckskin filly. So he will just have to do his visiting through the fence.

Got the lambing jugs cleaned out of all the things Frank was storing in them. Ordered lambing supplies, which have since arrived. Frank has started feeding the ewes some alfalfa hay. Frank and I also built 2-- eight foot by four inches wide, feed bunks for the ewes. I started feeding the ewes grain twice a day.

When it is time to feed the ewes their grain, Ezio and Charlie first have to get put into the barn.

Yesterday, I enlisted the help of family to assist me with the crutching. Hubby gave vitamins A & D to the ewes. I know one day, I will just have to bite the bullet and start giving needles myself. In time. Towards the end of our task, one of my ewes decided she wasn't going to have any part of this crutching thing, and decided to escape. The only problem with that idea was that I was standing in the path that led towards her freedom. I have been around livestock for over twenty years, and this is the first time, I got injured. She rammed my knee. Man did that hurt!!! Needless to say, it has slowed me down. Alot! Good thing it has been snowing all day, today. Can't do much out there now.

Crutching is the trimming away of wool from the crotch area and around the udder of the ewe. The benefits of crutching before lambing it just gives me a better view of the vulva and the udder. It will help me to see which ewe would be the next to lamb. Plus by trimming all of the 'dirty' wool from the butt area, it aids in a cleaner birth, if I have to intervene. Crutching removes the wool tags from around the ewe's udder, and this prevents the lamb from sucking on dirty, possible germ laden tags.

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  1. OH! MAN! That was way over my head. So glad you explained "crotching". I cannot even imagine what that must be like. (My cat occassionally gets poop stuck in her fur...I guess I have to "crotch" her but OH MY! She is not as big as a lamb. Hope your knee is better soon. Love hearing your stories.

  2. The hubby has to 'crotch' some of his dogs's butts also!