We interrupt our scheduled memoir to bring breaking news of this year’s lambing, which began three days earlier than expected. Naturally we were ready for such an eventuality as Shelagh keeps a record of each ewe and their previous lambing record (some ewes have a habit of early births). Plus we err on the safe side and bring each ewe into the lambing stable a couple of days early just in case.
So we moved – as in half led, half pushed – our first ewe up the hill from their pasture on Monday evening. And, because no ewe likes being on her own, we brought the next one up to keep her company. The next morning the first ewe gave birth to triplets – two boys and one girl. The first picture shows the family group two days later. We fence off small areas of our lawn to allow the ewe and lambs to bond outside in a protected environment before putting them out with the main flock. New lambs have a habit of getting lost, running to the wrong ewe and, sometimes, when they try to suckle, receiving a head butt as a reminder.
Two days later we were monitoring the second ewe when Shelagh noticed the third ewe, still in the main field, looking pensive and moving away from the rest of the flock. Half an hour later that ewe started to give birth and we had to move her to the lambing pen – up a steep hill with very little assistance from the ewe in question. She had two ewe lambs. I had a minor coronary.
The second ewe, who was now third, followed suit the next morning. The pictures show the two sets of twins that day. Both sets are less than 24 hours old. One of the girls, a mere six hours old, is having a bad ear day – and she knows it.