During lambing season I stay home as much as possible and keep my eye on the ewes throughout the day. If I have first time moms (and this year I have several) I want to make sure that I am around to assist (if necessary) and to put mom and babies into the jug as soon as possible.
Yesterday, as I observed the ewes I noticed that Kaia didn't eat much breakfast and spent most of the day in the back of the hut away from the other girls. It was clear to me that she was in the early stages of labor. Around 4:15 her water broke. At 5:00 p.m. she delivered a beautiful black ram lamb. She immediately started licking the baby and nickering to him. I stayed away from the pen until she had most of the sac cleared off. Then I moved mom and baby to the jug.
Unfortunately, about an hour before Kaia's water broke I started coming down with a virus that Kirk brought home from work. I became very dizzy and started cramping. After I got Kaia into the jug I hung around for about an hour to make sure everything was okay. Then the illness hit me full force and I spent the rest of the night running between the bathroom and my bed.
Kaia is such a good mommy. She talks to her baby frequently, licks and nuzzles him, and will put herself between the baby and any perceived danger (i.e. dogs and humans). It is such a blessing to start out the lambing season on a positive note!
As you can see in the following pics, I ended up having to use shavings because the ground was so muddy and I couldn't find straw. Talk about a huge mess! Never again will I use shavings. Wood chips, maybe...but never shavings. I am a happy camper now because my wonderful hubby found some straw this afternoon. He even put the bales in the back of his FJ (and subsequently spent a lot of time vacuuming the heck out of it). What a guy!! :)
|Wake up, buddy...the strange lady is getting too close!|
|What a nice wooly wood chip coat you have there little guy|
|What a handsome fellow!|
|Well, we do live in Amish country...|