There has been a lack of blogs from me, I have been busy qualifying as a Midwife! I have now finished my training therefore I am commencing my new role as a Midwife at a local hospital soon. The past three years have flown by and so has the time since I last wrote a blog!
Everything on the farm remains ticking over, all the sheep enjoying the lushious grass in the gorgeous sunshine. We have sold the majority of the fat lambs to the meat market with only a few remaining that aren't quite big enough. They are on lots of grass and also a supplement feed called 'Creep'. We have also sold some of the breeding sheep, ones that aren't sutiable to breed from next year. The ones we usually sell have problems such as long/missing teeth - this means they wont be able to eat and maitain their weight to support lambs, udder issues - sheep have a pair of udders and can often go 'one sided' where only one side works therefore unable to feed two lambs. Other sheep we sell may also long term hoof issues.
My small flock of pedigree Suffolks are doing well, my two shear (three year old female ewe) is in top condition and is ready to be transported back to where i bought her from to mate with another pedigree ram this weekend. Her offspring, Norman and Nancy, are also doing well. Nancy will be left to grow for another year before putting her to the ram next year to breed. Norman is in the field with the fat lambs and the new ram however Norman won't be getting put with females to mate this year, he to will be left to mature and grow having regualar feed to aid with this. Hopfully there will be a new addition to the Suffolk flock in a couple of weeks - watch this space!
Soon it will be coming up to 'tupping time', the time when we put the ram (male sheep) in with the ewes (female sheep) to mate and hopefully produce some healthy lambs in the spring. To replace the ewes we sold we have bought some Texel x Chiveiot ewes who are all in prime condition ready for breeding. We have given all the females a full 'M.O.T' to ensure they are in optimum health ready for the upcoming breeding season. We have wormed and vitamin drenched them, trimmed all their hooves, fly sprayed them and trimmed around their tails. They will shortly be showered by the contractor that protects them from ticks, lice and scab.
We only keep one ram here, this year we sold the previous rams used and bought a new male. Myself and my partner Myles attended the local ram sale - 'The Ram-Page'. Here we purchased Stanley. He is a Texel x Beltex ram who is classed as a shearling (two years old but shorn once). Currently he is in with the remaining fat lambs before being let loose with the ladies later in the month. For a ram he is relatively quiet in the field and enjoys his tup ration (a corse mix of grain and proven) regularly. Stanley is quite the character who is rather fond of his bucket of feed, if we try and remove it before he is finished he stamps his foot and drops his head at us!