Saturday, March 28, 2009

This Years First Fruits

Had to throw in a quick shot that relates to yesterday's blog (cause I was too slack then to take any pictures for you). There you have the John Deere 8200, with the Shearer air seeder box and John Deere 2200 bar sitting outside my workshop.

Today, being a Saturday, I took it fairly easy with the farm work, just had the sheep feeding to do. So the usual feeding run, but I did have my 10 y/o daughter with me for the run today which was very nice. Only other thing I had to different was to top up the Ford tipper first. I emptied her out on the last feeding run the other day,so I just had to drive it round under the auger which is in a field bin out in the yard and fill it up from there.

There was a lovely little surprise waiting for us in the first mob of ewes we fed. This seasons first fruits. A lovely little pair of twin lambs.

You can just see them with their mother. They are small but quite healthy and by the looks of it they have a very good mother. You can just tell a good mothering sheep by the way she keeps a close eye on her lambs, and they stuck by her side all the time and were feeding nicely. It was a pleasure to watch. They would have been born today, so that's the first for the season, and how nice that they were a little set of twins.

Now a quick anatomy lesson for non sheep experts (and an explanation for those of you who are sheep experts). You'll notice another sheep feeding on the grain I had just fed out there in the foreground. Well the sheep expert will be thinking "now that's a funny looking ewe". The non sheep expert will be thinking "yeah I see it". Well it is, in fact, not a ewe (sheep expert "well obviously"). It's a younger wether. You can tell that because it's quite easy to see it's pizzle (midway along the belly - on the underside). It's actually a lamb that was born last year out of season. We usually only have an autumn lambing, but a ram got in with the ewes last year at the wrong time and so we had a few september lambs as well.

I just realised I haven't given you a sheep vocabulary lesson yet either...
A ewe is a female sheep. A lamb is a baby sheep (male or female). A hoggett is a young sheep up to about 2 years old (that's not an exact definition. a sheep expert will be able to tell you more). A hoggett can be both male or female. A ram is a male sheep of any age. And a wether is a castrated or de-sexed male sheep also of any age. Do I have to define what a pizzle is? Guess if you cant work it out you can always ask me.

Feel free to comment or ask any questions.

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