Monday, 26 January 2015

The Scanner Man Can

Apologies for anyone who has taken the time and effort to compose a comment on the blog, only to have it disappear into the internets somewhere, never to be read or appreciated. I jiggled some settings and hopefully any comments will now be saved. And read. And appreciated. Let me know if the jiggling worked.

To make it up to you, I will now post a picture of a cute puppy -

Meet Molly. She's Mike's new puppy. (Now we each have four dogs, so we're even.) She's a black and white springer spaniel, four months old. She's very endearing.

Mike's going to struggle to discipline that face. 

Even Pip accepts her -

Well, maybe accepts is a strong word. Tolerates. Endures, possibly. They already share a love of napping.

Molly will soon be joined by baby lambs. The mobile scanner man came today and my flock is officially in lamb -

Malcolm the scanner man pulled up with the whole unit on a trailer. He was set up and ready to go before I could boil the kettle to make him a cup of tea. 

The ewes walk up the ramp, in goes the device, and an ultrasound of each ewe's uterus pops up on a screen. Malcolm counts the amniotic sacs and gives me the results, and I spray one purple dot on the ewe's back for each lamb inside her. We're expecting in total: 6 singles, 11 twins and 3 triplets. Eunice and my old matron lamb are both empty, so they will have a season off.

Before lambing starts, we still have the final week of shoot season to get through. The dogs and I are doing 4 shoot days this week, and our last day is Saturday - a beater's day, which means all the beaters and pickers up who helped though the season can bring their guns and shoot a few cock pheasants. I butchered a fallow deer to make a huge pot of venison stew for our end of year meal. All in all it's been a successful season. This winter will soon be over, spring will be here bringing lambs and pheasant chicks, in preparation for the next winter.


Colette said...

Comment disappeared?😢 loving catching up with you stew sounded lovely.

Colette said...

And that pup!!!!

Seester said...

I also love naps and want to join the crew. Do Pip and the new puppy also like television and baked goods? If so, I would like to apply for an official position on your couch-sitting staff.

Maria said...

see now i feel privileged that my comment made it :-)

still liking the picture of your new puppy though.

Tell us ignoramuses about lambing - is twins the ideal outcome? If I remember rightly you feed the ewes differently according to whether they are pregnant with single/twin/triplets?

Christine said...

I have three things: I'm looking forward to learning about your sheeping endeavors in your new place. Second: Cute puppy face! And third: kudos to you for using a Willy Wonka reference in your title. :)

Jennifer Montero said...

Maria - You are exactly right - twins is the desired outcome. If all the ewes got pregnant and had twins, it would be a 200% return, with enough teats to go around so no bottle fed lambs. But where's the fun in that, eh? I will feed the ewes with twins and triplets a concentrate, and watch out for problems like twin lamb disease, which is easily treated if caught in time. I won't feed the ewes until later in the pregnancy, as I want the food to go to the ewe, not to make bigger lambs that will be a problem coming out!

Maria said...

Thanks Jen! (I didn't know about feeding later to feed the ewe not the lamb).