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More spring photos of the Churros

28 Mar

2012 lambs on the ground

28 Mar

Yazzie and her 2012 twin ewes

Bored with Farmville? Try the real thing…

25 May

going public?

What I’ve failed to blog about since April 1: digging fence post holes, fencing, trying to contain the lambs who can slip through any fence, mucking winter paddocks, caring for the chicks and poults, rolling round bales around, planting the garden, digging new garden beds, re-doing the interior of the chicken/turkey coop, weeding, hauling the chicken tractor around, more fencing, butchering the mean roosters and turkey tom who should have taken care of last fall, more weeding, more digging, mowing. Back-breaking work that can be tedious, but never boring, and is so vital to keeping the farm operational.

This Saturday is supposed to be shearing day…but today it’s raining and soaking all the sheep. Hopefully we’ll get a few days of clear skies so they dry out, otherwise we’ll have to postpone. Can’t shear a wet/damp sheep. Will post photos.

Little lambies

16 Mar

We thought we could get a cute photo of Alice in an empty water tank surrounded by our early crop of lambs, but their crying for their mamas caused Alice to cry, and so we just have shots of panicked lambs and a crying girl. Oh well.

Our nine lambs continue to do great, however! Another ewe is due to drop any day now, three could be lambing anytime this spring, and six to eight more are due in June.

Columbus photobombing in the background

Our black and white flock

Oops! One jumped out!

Lots of ewe lambs, and one baby boy

7 Mar

We’ve had four sets of twins and one single so far, and just one ram in the bunch! Four are black, four solid white and one badger face/black & brown. So so terribly cute! They were loving the warm weekend weather, lots of sunbathing snoozing.

Interestingly, our black Navajo Churro ram, Payton, has thrown four of six black lambs, with one white and one badger (black & brown). We recently purchased a white ram, Wo-Chi, so maybe we’ll end up with a flock of furry Holstein-looking sheep!

E. Friesian/Churro crosses - twin ewes four & five

Purebred Churros - ewe lambs six & seven!

Purebred Churros - ewe #8 and ram #1!

Shooting flames of forsythia

14 Apr

We bought our little farm in the fall, when the pear trees were overladen with fruit, but everything else was already brown. There didn’t seem to be much beyond a sparse perimeter of pines offering some green in an otherwise large, barren and windswept yard.

Now that spring is here, little bursts of color are appearing, past evidence of some care put into landscaping. There are a number of forsythias (I think these are forsythias), that look like yellow flames shooting out of the ground, particularly in the setting sun.

In a few weekends we’re having a permaculturist out to give us some guidance on how we can turn our barren acres into an overabundance of food and lush greenery in all seasons. Orchard and nut trees, effective wind blocks and shade trees in all the right places, edible bushes lining meandering walking paths, perennial gardens, a pond and maybe even some swales down the hillside. I’m really looking forward to hearing what she has to say, and getting some help turning my vision into reality.

Out like a lion…

21 Mar

Typical March — one last nasty cold snap just when you’re convinced Spring has arrived for good.

We have three ewes close to lambing, within the week hopefully, and no woolly coats, having just sheared them early last week! We came out to feed them Saturday morning and the poor girls were shivering. So into the shed they went for the day, a bit confused but happy for a bit of extra grain.

Today was a bit warmer and hopefully each day going forward. We’ll dig out a heat lamp for lambing just in case. And next year, April lambs only, please!

The guessing game

16 Mar

Are they pregnant or not?

Today was shearing day, meaning not only do I now have mounds of wool to process and play with, but we can see udders! For experienced shepherds that might not be a big deal, but for for newbies like us it makes a big difference in figuring out how close our little ewes are to lambing, or even if they’re pregnant at all.

Last week was fear and elation upon hearing from the vet that she thinks all five of our ewes are bred. Today, however, looking at our little deflated ewes without their woolly coats, we’re thinking a little differently. Three certainly seem to have bulging bellies and growing udders. A couple others, not so much. All is well though. Whether there are 2 or 10 lambs in the coming weeks, we’re loving tending to our little flock.

Now, if only our bully Friesian would stop butting our friendliest little Churro, Hernanda.

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