Wednesday was Lisa’s day off, so I had the evening shift. I brought the ewes into the barn just before dark, and then went to blanket the horses. Five minutes later I looked back in the drop-pen, and there was Flora, one of our white Corriedales, with a head protruding! I couldn’t imagine how I missed when I had brought the ewes in only 10 minutes earlier. It looked like only a head, and lambs can’t be born that way, so I gloved up and got towels, lube and a lamb rope and prepared to deliver the lamb. When I came back, I saw that there was a foot showing also. Flora was very wary of me and I wan’t able to catch her, so I stalked her and when the moment presented itself I grabbed the foot and pulled the lamb. It was dead. I tried and tried to get it to breathe, hoping that it was just delayed breathing, but I failed. I was SO sad! Flora licked and licked that dead lamb. She didn’t appear to have a second one on the way. I was worried that if another ewe lambed in the night Flora could steal the lamb, and also I wanted to be sure to confirm that Flora passed the afterbirth. And also, since it wasn’t clear why the lamb died, I didn’t want other ewes exposed to the afterbirth. So I cleaned up the area where Flora lambed, and used the dead lamb to lure Flora into a lambing jug. I felt so awful and Flora was baaing the sad baas of a ewe who has lost a lamb. I went back to the house to put some dinner in the oven, and then straight back to the barn to check on Flora. I met Lisa on the way (can’t keep her away, ever on her day off) and told her the sad story of Flora. Lisa really loves Flora, and she came to the barn with me to see if I may need help. I was worried she may have another dead lamb, but when I opened the door there were happy mother and lamb sounds, and there was Flora in her jug with a lovely little girl! Oh does she LOVE that lamb!
Even more exciting, when I checked the records I realized Flora was bred to our new ram Perry the Cormo, so little Daisy as Lisa named her is our first Cormo cross. Flora has a lovely fine fleece, and the Cormo genetics should make Daisy’s even finer.
Yesterday morning Melinda found Ruth with twins, and commented to me that these lambs are “so soft!” It turns out that Ruth, who is a “‘Romnesian,” (half East Friesian half Romney) and has a beautiful fleece, was also bred to Perry, so her twin girls are also Cormo crosses. So exciting! I’m thrilled all three lambs are girls and can’t wait to see their fleeces.