Wednesday, 15 May 2019

Lambing 2019 and far!

New born lambs drying out in the sunshine

One of our first sets of triplets to be born

One of our last sets of triplets to be born, all a lovely size!

The shepherd getting some attention on his birthday

One of the many tractor and trailer rides on our open days.  The ride took visitors past our cows.

Emma, Molly and Annika.  Three of our amazing vet students who come back each year to help us on our open days.

Emma talking to visitors about a ewe going into labour.

Rachel, Jane and Sally, some of our lovely helpers on our open days, thank you!

Taking a load of ewes and lambs out for the first time.  One of our favourite jobs.

Lambing 2019 has officially finished!  The weather has been amazing this year, perfect conditions for lambing outside like we do and turning ewes and lambs out onto fresh spring grass.  Everything is easier when its not raining!  However, there is always a sting in the tail with farming, as we now really need rain to keep the grass growing so the ewes can continue producing milk for their lambs and so we can harvest a good crop of hay to store for this winter.

We have some beautiful calves and 7 cows left to calve, they are in front of our house and their deep, rich brown colour against the blue sky contrasting with the fresh green grass is just stunning.  We had some naughty cows not wanting their calves initially which we found surprising, we expect some bad behaviour with the sheep but the cows we expect better!  Things have settled now we are relieved to say.

We have planted 2 new areas of herbal ley mixes and again we need rain to help these establish.  Herbal leys are a mix of different grasses, legumes and herbs, together they provide a range of benefits for healthy rumens of our sheep and cow and good soil health and fertility due to their deep rooting structure.  This structure is one of the key reasons we want to have these types of ley as they are better at coping with drought conditions due to the depth of their roots.  When we were so dry last summer, our red clover field kept our lambs growing as the plants remained green and healthy and continued to grown despite the severe lack of rain.  We have included plants such as chicory which has a high mineral content and perhaps most important of all from the sheeps perspective they think they are incredibly tasty!  We believe this will also enhance the flavour or our meat too.  We look forward to updating our blog with progress over the coming months, I hope by the next time I write we will have had rain.

The swallows, house martins and swifts have returned and we love hearing their calling around the farm, a true sign of summer arriving on the farm, we love it.  Freddie has 2 nests above his bedroom window and we can hear the chicks chattering away, its wonderful.

More soon

Camilla, Roly, Molly, Freddie and Fly

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