Sunday, October 21, 2012

Babies... it really is time again.First

 It is that time again.  Annmarie went out to let the sheep out of the barn two days ago and found this little guy laying next to one of the feeders.  She coaxed momma into one of the prepared jugs (sheep creche) so the momma and baby can hang out together separated from everyone else.  This lets the baby get stronger without having to run around everywhere and try to keep up with mom.  It also keeps them out of the weather and warm.  This is our first baby from the new ram.  If you look closely you can see his face is more square than our other babies from years back. 
First baby of the fall and our new ram.

He was also very healthy and strong.  We are not sure if it is because he is a single or if it is the new ram.  The first few twins will tell whether the ram is the cause.  If he is throwing stronger lambs then go boy!  The jugs worked out great.  The only problem now is I don't have the barn subdivided to keep the mommas and babies in one side and everyone else in the other.  Subdividing is not the big deal.  The big deal is there needs to be two separate entrances into the barn and the outside fencing has to keep the two groups separate with both groups having access to running water.  We hate carrying water in the winter and since the front creek never freezes we don't need to as long as the animals can get to it.  This means more fence building for me.  I need to put hanging boards off of two gates so the sheep don't crawl under the gates.  I also need to drive in two metal posts into the ground on the back fence.  Hopefully, this will make the main barn lot sheep proof.  The momma/baby area just needs a panel across the creek so they don't crawl under the fence at this location.  I also need to finish nailing the back barn lot/ram pasture dividing fence in place.  It is currently held in place with two fence tighteners.  Not ideal, but really I have been busy at the new job and haven't had a lot of time. 

I also need to make a metal lid for the grain bin in the barn.  I have decided to do this out of two pieces of tin roofing.  I am just going to beat them flat on the anvil.  I also have to make a handle so you can let the grain out of the bin.  So fencing and grain bin are the next two projects.  I really want to get to the sorting chute, but alas not yet.  This may very well become the Thanksgiving project with Doom. I was hoping to do a closet in the laundry room instead of the chute.  There are still two closets that need to be built in the laundry room. We will see. 

There are seven more ewes that will deliver in the next few months.  Our babies are not old enough, we don't expect any of them to birth until they are over 12 months old.  On a plus note we have already gotten almost 9/10 of an inch of rain this month.  Amazingly, the ground is not muddy and sloppy.  The ground has absorbed every drop of rain and croaked for more.  I think we could tolerate another whole inch before it started to stay on the surface.