The lambs and Dixie seem to be doing very well. This is my first lambing and its been decades since I had anything to do with birthing animals (I don’t think brine shrimp count) so I am both excited and nervous. Tonight the temperatures are predicted to stay around zero or a little lower like last night. Shetland sheep are hardy animals, mine will sleep outside most nights unless it is pouring rain or the temperature is lower than -10 F. But lambs, like any baby animal, are vulnerable to so many things.
I’ve been visiting them every hour or so today bringing a little hay to everyone, holding and petting the lambs and their mother. Dixie is very comfortable with me touching her lambs. I want them to become used to me so that as they get older they will be easier to handle.
Aries, the ram, has undergone a partial personality change. He’s become a doting father and has not left the pen where the shed is except to get his evening grain. He used to shove everyone around but now he’s keeping an eye on what’s going on in the shed. He still shoves but much less, that’s why he’s only undergone a partial personality change.
I think Faith and Brennah, two of my other ewes, are close to birthing. They probably got pregnant in November after I let Aries back in with the flock (that was the plan, but Dixie and Aries must have tupped before the separation). Sheep gestation is about 5 months. Both are very round right now. Britt may be pregnant too but I don’t know about Buttercup. I think her hunger is just a craving for molasses sweetened grain and nothing more. But we’ll see.