Santa Cruz Island Lambing Update

Post date: Jul 02, 2016 10:19:50 PM

So happy and excited! Yesterday early morning, ewe 203 finally gave birth to a beautiful lamb! Jim thought at first it was a girl but as it turns out, a boy. It is very difficult to tell until you get a good look rearwise - and our policy is to interfere as little as possible, especially the first day, to allow mama and lamb to bond without stress.

Here he is yesterday, having a drink of milk.

And here he is beginning to stand up after a nap.

To give an idea of how fast the lambs grow, here is the new lamb and his mother on the right, and an older lamb - 2 weeks older, approximately, on the left.

Then this morning when we were out doing chores - I was feeding the chickens and Jim called me to come look. Seven of 9 was in labor! Stand up, lie down, stand up, paw the ground, lie down, stand up... She had a lamb at 7:15 this morning - see the little "scrap" of white lamb on the ground, while she cleans it and talks to it.

Then, 25 minutes later, after cleaning lamb number 1 and pawing the ground, she lay down and then - she had another lamb! Much cleaning and talking to this new little one too.

Between 12:30 and 1:00 this afternoon, I checked on them, and the babies were sleeping in the shearing shed (in the shade) and mama was keeping a close watch over them. Gender of the new lambs is unknown (to us) at this point. Twinning is supposedly rare with Santa Cruz Island sheep but 7 of 9 has twinned twice before.

This is nice, to have three lambs about the same age, they can play together since the other 7 lambs are quite a bit stronger, being 2 to 3 weeks older. If all goes well this three will catch up pretty soon.

Nine ewes, 10 lambs, not bad!