Thursday, February 24, 2011

A Lambing Journal - Day 3

It's just after 10 p.m. as I write this, and it's been a very long day.  It started out great - two new sets of twins this morning, and a single this afternoon.  Unfortunately we're getting very cold rain and wind tonight.  At my 8 p.m. visit to the sheep, I found that the lambs weren't handling the cold well.  After talking it over with Sami, we decided to bring all of the lambs and ewes home.  We have two lambs on the hearth warming up, and everyone else is in the barn.  I'll head back out to the ranch (about a 3 mile drive) at 1 a.m. to check for more lambs - I hope the rest of the ewes can hold on.
Paul weighing one of the new lambs.
Warming by the woodstove.

Tomorrow, we'll move onto a different property with access to a barn.  We're supposed to get even colder tomorrow, so I plan on dropping the rest of my activities and get the sheep situated.

I love what I do, but days like this are draining (physically and emotionally).  Hope tomorrow's a better day!


  1. No new lambs at 1 a.m. - thank goodness. The two lambs that were in by the fire have revived and are back out with their mothers.

  2. Yesterday, on our way up the hill to the village, traffic was stoped for a "transhumance"...moving sheep and goats to new pastures. We parked the car and followed the shephards down the road to there resting spot for the night. It was fascinating to watch them work...the dogs, the animals, the man on a donkey, the team of about 6 people. They have a ten day journey from Vaucluse region to the Drome region. Later that night, we walked down to the cliff and listened to the animals, the bells around their necks, the wind and standing in that bitter cold, I realized the beauty and sacrifice of those wonderful people we call shepherds. Thank you Macon family, for safeguarding a precious way of life!

  3. No new lambs at 5 a.m. We did lose two of the lambs we brought home - the cold and wet was just too much for them. I'll spend today moving sheep and setting up some shelter.

    Marc and Monica's comments brought tears to my eyes - it's been a tough night. Times like this, I always second-guess myself. I know these problems are part of what I signed up for when I became a shepherd, but it doesn't make it any easier.