Lambing 2007: Round One

114_1450For the past seven nights,  I’ve fallen asleep to the sound of the ewe flock’s rumination and quiet evening sheep banter.  My ear is carefully tuned to the baby monitor and, no matter how tired I am, the slightest blip in the barn hum awakens me.  I spend the next several moments listening.      Sounds of hoof scraping the barn floor, heavy breathing, straining, pushing are all give-aways that lambs are soon to follow.  On nights when I’ve somehow managed to sleep through a ewe’s quiet labor, the shrill cry on a newborn lamb, followed by its mother’s snickering pulls me from bed in a flash.

With the arrival of 28 lambs in six days, I have not been getting much sleep.    What sleep I get is light and fragmented – my brain never really shuts down.   Once alerted, I estimate it takes me no more than three minutes to yank coveralls over my pj’s and head to the barn.  Sometimes, it’s a false alarm.  Without turning on the lights, I tip-toe down the east aisle of the barn only to observe a  peaceful flock.   

Last Wednesday night, after three false alarms, Ursa delivered a lovely pair of cormo-cross lambs, just as the sun began to rise over East Hill. 

The arrival and installation of my "lamb cam" last week has saved me quite a few middle of the night barn trips.  Instead of levitating out of bed and dashing to the barn at every sound, I  now turn to the monitor to see if there’s any action.  It almost feels like cheating.   

Here  are some shots of our earliest arrivals:


Our llama, Crackerjack inspects the first lamb to arrive.  Does that Border Leicester lamb have one black leg??