Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Update on Ed

 Ed is still with us. Still can't get up but eating and trying to get up. I still have hope. I'm not giving up hope yet. We took him to the Vet yesterday and got a short of Bose and Vitamin B.  He weighed 14.64lbs. He was a big boy.

I hope no more lambs until thursday. Not tomorrow please.... Leap day.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Ed can't get up.

Ed is in our house, he couldn't get up after about 2 hrs after he was born and they usually are up about 15-30 minutes after they are born.
       We think Ed (The lamb born 2-26-12) is premature. just by a few days. he can't get up and all of his foot are not fully formed yet.  (The bottoms)
I'm staying up all night to watch him and feed him very 2 hrs.  I will Weigh him tomorrow. I will keep you posted..... about Ed.

Jolene's lamb. It's a boy Febrauy 26, 2012

       Another lamb is here. It's a boy.  I'm going to name him Ed.  She only had Single  This is her first lamb. I taped the birth. It's not that good of a video. it was dark in the shall so you can't see it very well. Hope i can catch another ewe giving birth.. I also hope i have more ewe lambs. I need one set of triplet to make 12 lambs now.  only 4 more ewes to go now.  i will weigh Ed tomorrow morning...

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Picture's of Marcia's Lambs 2-25-12

Maggie Jr, Eli ( Birth day)

Marcia, Maggie jr, and Eli ( 15 days old)

Maggie Jr, Eli, and Marcia ( 15 days old)

Eli, and Maggie Jr ( 15 days old)

Eli, and Maggie Jr ( 15 days old)
Maggie Jr, Eli ( 15 days old)

Marcia's twin lambs, Febraury 25, 2012

    Well when i got up this morning Marcia had a set of twins. one boy that weighed 12.61lbs that i'm going to name Eli, and one girl that weighed 10.40lbs  she will be Maggie jr. I'm a happy person right now.  Now more waiting....  P.S This is Marcia's first set of twins.  E is the winner....

Friday, February 24, 2012

Lamb delivery - Lambing

Here is a sheep Giving Birth. it's called lambing.

I'm Still Waiting For The Lambs

     I'm still waiting for lambs to come. Hopefully in the next few days. I'm about to  kill my ewes for making me  wait for the lambs to come. It's so hard to wait. I also want alot of lambs. but they need to be here by the March 14th or i will have to have someone babysitt them for 5 days.
    Last night was the first night the all the ewes had there own pen in the night. so they can get use to going to the right pen so i didn't have to put then in the right pen and sort out the lambs too. the Ram and the two ewe lambs stayed the night outside in the two fields.. The ram on one side and the ewe lambs on the other.
      This morning when i take hay out for the sheep. The Ram ( Herman) butted me.  I just have to look out tomorrow.... and maybe do the hay from the other side. i will keep you posted on the Lambs.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Might have Lambs Today.

    Well the day i'm been counting down until is here.  This Morning Jolene and Marcia's plugs are starting to come out. so i might have lambs today. Hopefully they are in labor but they could be ticking me. I will keep you posted.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Lambs Can Come In 1 Day Or Anytime

     Well my count down is done. My ewes can lamb when ever the lambs are ready. I checked them today and Marcia will go in the next week i think. ( hopefully not on Feb 29)  Jolene , Jackie, and Blackeyed susan have good size udders too. and Megan will go in the next few weeks.  Nancy has about 3 weeks maybe she is just starting to get udders. so. yeah.  it's just so hard to wait for them. I will keep you posted.

Monday, February 20, 2012

3 days to go.

I 'm back from Brown County Indiana. Now I only have 3 days until my ewes can start Lambing..  I think Marcia will be the first one to go. then Jolene, then Blackeyed susan, Jackie then Megan and Nancy will be last. Come on lambs I'm ready for you....

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Marcia's 4th Birthday.

It's Marcia's 4th birthday today....  

Happy Birthday To Marcia

Only 10 days to go until my sheep can start lambing. (giving birth).  

Monday, February 13, 2012

Jackie's 2rd birthday, 10 days to go.

It's Jackie's 2nd birthday today. I saw her being born.

Only 10 days until my ewes can start lambing.. yay.... Marcia 4th birthday is tomorrow and Nancy's 5th birthday on Saturday.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

12 days to go.

Well. only 12 days to go now until my  little lambs can start being born! i checked my  6 ewes yeterday. 4 of them look like they can go in the next few weeks or a  Month. but the other 2 have small udders still. i just hope they lamb before the Middle of March....

 Blackeyed susan looks like she may have more them one.( she has had single all of her past years but one year she had twins but the rest of her lambs have been singles.( this will be her 5th year lambing. ( 07 Single girl ,08 twins one girl and one boy , 10 single girl, 11 Single boy)
Nancy;  this will be her 3rd lambing. (2010 single girl. and  2011  twins Boy and girl)
Megan; this will be her 3rd lambing  ( 2010 twins boys and 2011 twins boy and girl)
Marcia also looks big like she has twins or triplets. this will be 3rd lambing ( 2010 Single boy, and 2011 single boy)
Jolene; this will be her 1st year to lamb. i hope she has twins.
Jackie ; this will be her 1st year to lamb too. i hope she has twins too.

 i would like them to have twims and one set of triplets.  i will post when they have there Lambs.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Jolene 2nd Birthday!

It's Jolene's 2nd birthday. I give her an apple but she didn't know how to eat it. so i cut it up and i think then we figured it out.  i only have 17 more days until the lambs can start coming. i can't wait until i have lambs.

Happy 2nd Birthday Jolene!!!!!!!!!!  

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

18 days to go.

I only have 18 days to go. there are all pregnant. all getting really big and bagging up. i can't wait until i have little lambs running around.  my ewe Jolene is going to be 2 tomorrow.  than Jackie will be 2 on Monday the 13th.  and Marcia will be 4 next tuesday the 14th. then Nancy will be 5 on the 18th and then it will be the March birthday's but first my 7th year anniversary for having my own sheep on the 3rd of March.  them it's Heathers and herman's 1st birthdya on the 6th of march. then Hannah's 1st birthday on the 7th. and them blackeyed susan's 7th birthday on the 13th. of March.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Shropshire the breed for all seasons.

and her all the RIGHT reasons 
  1. They are "easy keepers" and excel in feed efficiency!
  2. They are SUPER mothers!
  3. The Lambs grow fast and get to market early!
  4. Shropshire lamb carcasses are well-muscled and meaty!
  5. The ewes give birth easily; the New-born lambs are strong and Vigorous!
  6. Their gentle disposition and medium size make them easy to handle!
  7. Shropshire do well on pasture!
  8. Shropshire have lots of twins and Triplets!
  9.  The ewes live a long time and continue to Produce lambs until they are tem  years of age or more!
  10. Shropshire are ideal for Youth projects!
*Answers from a 1992 survey conducted by the American Shropshire Registry*

Saturday, February 4, 2012


    Ewes usually give birth to 1 to 3 lambs at each birthing event. Birthing is called lambing. The technical term for all species is parturition. Twin births (two babies) is most common in well-managed flocks and with many breeds of sheep. First-time moms, especially yearlings, are more likely to have single births, though twins are not uncommon in some breeds. Ewes produce their largest litters of lambs when they are between the ages of 3 and 6.

There are some breeds of sheep that average more than two lambs per litter. In the U.S., the most prolific sheep breeds are Finnsheep and Romanov. The hair sheep breeds (Katahdin, St. Croix, and Barbado) also tend to be quite prolific, averaging more than two lambs per lambing: .
The more lambs a ewe has the more feed she needs to produce milk for them. Oftentimes, extra lambs need to be cross-fostered onto other ewes or artificially reared. Proflic breeds are not recommended for novice shepherds or in situations where nutrition or management are limiting factors.

Because some sheep are raised in more difficult environments, sometimes it's more desirable for a ewe to have just one lamb. This is because there may not be enough food for the ewe to support the growth of two lambs. If the flock has to travel far for food and water, it's usually better to have one strong lamb than two or three smaller lambs that may struggle to keep up. Smaller, weaker lambs that lag behind the flock are more likely to be killed by predators.

Extra food

      During her last month of pregnancy, a ewe needs extra nutrition because her lambs are growing rapidly inside of her and her mammary (udder) tissue is developing. Approximately 70 percent of fetal growth occurs during the last month of pregnancy. The growth of the fetuses also reduces the ewe's rumen capacity, making her require a more-nutrient dense diet, especially if she is carrying multiple fetuses.

If a ewe doesn't get enough feed during late pregnancy, she may get sick because her unborn lambs are taking most of her nutrients. Thin and fat ewes and ewes carrying multiple fetuses are most prone to pregnancy toxemia (ketosis). Thus, it is common to feed some grain during late gestation. On the other hand, if a ewe eats too much during late pregnancy, she may have trouble delivering her lambs because they may get too big to fit through her pelvic cavity. Fat ewes are also more prone to having problems at lambing time.


     A ewe is pregnant for 142 to 152 days, approximately five months or slighter shorter. Pregnancy is also called gestation. Since ewes gestate for only five months, it is possible for them to lamb more often than once per year. While annual lambing is most common, lambing intervals of 8 months are realistic, especially in the tropics and with breeds that are less seasonal in their breeding habits.

First-time moms

     Though it depends upon breed, nutrition, and management, ewes can become mothers by the time they reach their first birthday. This is okay if the ewe lamb has achieved approximately two-thirds of her mature size (weight) before being bred. Thus, for some producers, it is commonplace to breed well-grown ewe lambs when they are 7 to 9 months of age. Other producers wait until their ewes are 18 months old before breeding them to lamb as 2 year olds. Different breeds of sheep reach puberty (sexually maturity) at different ages.

After the lamb is born

       The first 10 or 20 minurtes after birth are critical for the new lamb, especially if the weather is cold. You can do tree things to help:
1. see that no membranes cover the lamb's face or nose.
2. make sure the lamb is breathing. if it is not, rub  it briskly with dry towels to stimulate it to breathe.
3. place the lamb at ewes head and allow her to clean off the lamb.
try not to disturb the ewe for at least 30 minutes after she gives birth. however, if the lambing was different, she may be tired  and not attend to the lamb. if that's the case, try the lamb with a ckean towel. then return the lamb to the ewqe and allow her to bond with it with as little inferference as possible, too much activity on your part may cause the ewe to reject the lamb. Be  patient and let nature work.
        Once the ewe has clearly accepted the lamb by licking it and masking low, soft sounds, place the ewe and the lamb in the jug. Carry the s or hear it call out. then "lowly toward the jug the ewe will usually follow, as long as ashe can see the lamb "snip, dip,and strip"
          Snip. Use scissors to snip off the umbilical cord about 2 inches from the lambs body.
           Dip: Hold a small widemouthed bottle half full of tamed iopdine solution, such as betadine, or chlorhexidine solution (Nolvasan) tight against the abdomen and dip the umbilical cord in the iodine until the cord is saturrated. Use fresh iodine or chloehexidine for each lamb.
          Strip: The ewe's teats have a waxy plug that must be reoved before the lambs can nurse easily. strip milk from both of the ewe's teats, gently forcing out the plug. one squirt of milk from each teat will ensure that the milk can flow freely.
        In severely selenium-deficient areas, such as parts of the east coast and the pacific northwest, newborn lambs may benefit from a selenium the selenium status of the soil in your area.
        under nornal conditions, keep the ewe and the lambs inthe jug for no more than 3 days. Ewes with very small lambs, twins, or triplets may benefit from an extra day or two in the jug.

The lambing process

The lambing process

The lambing process has evolved over thousands of years and most ewes will lamb normally without any trouble or need for assistance. However, understanding the lambing process can help you understand when a ewe is ready to give birth and when it may be necessary to lend a helping hand.

The whole lambing process is controlled by a complex series of hormonal changes. It is the lamb who decides when it is time to be born. When a ewe is getting ready to deliever her lambs, she may not eat. Her udder and teats will be distended. Her vulva will be very dilated. She will appear a bit hollow just in front of her hips, and she'll be not as wide nd full over the rump, because the musculature there will have relaxed. The process sometimes appears "confusing" to first-time mothers, especially yearlings.

Lambing is divided into several phases. In the first phase, the cervix dilates and the birth canal is prepared for delivery. This phase lasts for approximately 12 to 24 hours. At the end of this phase, a clear-whitish discharge will appear. The presense of the mucous discharge means that lambing has begun. In the next phase, uterine contractions will increase.

As labor progresses, the ewe will spend more time lying down on her side with her head turned in the air. Eventually, a large "bubble" or water bag will appear, break, and expel the water. At this time, the tip of the nose and front feet of the lamb can be felt. The lamb is expeled. As ewes often have multiple births, the same sequence of the rupture of the waterbag and expulsion of the lamb will be repeated for the delivery of each lamb. Ewes will vary in the time taken to complete lambing.

The last stage of lambing includes the expulsion of the afterbirth or placenta. The placenta is usually expelled 30 to 60 mintues after the delivery of the last lamb. If the placenta is not expelled after 24 hours, there may be a problem. The ewe will eat the placenta because her instincts tell her to hide evidence of lambing to protect her offspring from predators. The placenta should be discarded to prevent the spread of disease and scavenging by dogs.

© Queen's Printer for Ontario, 1999.

Dystocia: assisting with difficult births
Dystocia (or difficult births) is one of the leading causes of newborn lamb death. A New Zealand study showed that dystocia accounted for about 50 percent of deaths among newborn lambs. There can be many causes of dystocia in a flock:

1) Abortion
2) Disproportionate size of the ewe and lamb
3) Malpresentation of the fetus
4) Failure of the cervix to dilate
5) Vaginal prolapse
6) Deformed lamb

One of the most difficult aspects of shepherding is knowing when and how to assist a ewe during lambing and when to call for help. It is generally recommended that if a ewe has been straining for over an hour and has nothing to show for it, it is time to check things out. Before entering a ewe, be sure to remove watches, rings, and other jewerly. Wash your hands in warm, soapy water and clean backside of the ewe.

Gloves or sleeves should be worn during the examination. Coat your hand up to your elbow with a non-irritating lubricant. The liberal use of a lubricant cannot be overemphasized. Bunch your fingers and thumb into a cone shape and insert them into the ewe's vagina. If the cervix is open, you should feel the lamb's nose. Next, you need to determine where the lamb's front legs are. If the presentation is normal, the ewe should be able to deliver the lamb on her own, unless it is too big for her pelvic opening.

You should not keep pulling your hand in and out of the ewe and should not change hands without washing again. Getting the ewe to stand up or elevating her hindquarters will allow more room for repositioning nd result in less vigorous straining. If you have worked for a half hour with no progress, it is a good idea to call a veterinarian or a more experienced shepherd. Excessive stress in pulling and delayed delivery can result in a dead lamb and serious injury to the ewe.

A live lamb will assist to some extent with its own birth. There is never enough room in the birth canal to correctly position a lamb. The lamb must be returned to the uterus before any corrections can be made. You should not attempt to deliver a lamb when the birth canal is only partially dilated. This can seriously damage the ewe. After all deliveries, check to make sure that there are no other lambs remaining in the uterus. After any assisted delivery, you should give the ewe an injection of a long-acting antibiotic.

Normal presentation
Normal delivery is when the two front feet appear with the head resting between them. Rarely is any assistance needed. However, a small ewe may have trouble delivery a very large lamb. In this case, gentle assistance may be needed. You should pull the lamb downward during her contractions.BackwardsA backwards (hind legs first) delivery is also a normal delivery. It is common with twins and triplets. You should never attempt to convert a backwards delivery to a "normal" frontwards delivery. Turning a lamb around can result in death of the lamb or damage to the uterus. Plus, it is not necessary.
Elbow lockAn elbow lock is a "normal" position except the lamb's elbows are locked in the birth canal. You will need to push the lamb slightly back into the birth canal to extend the legs.

Leg(s) back
If one or both legs are back, you need to cup the lamb's hooves in your palm and bring them forward. A small lamb may be pulled with one leg back. If you are not able to bring the legs foward, you should slip a lambing rope onto one or both limbs and push the head back far enough to allow the legs to be drawn forward.

Head back
If the front legs are forward, but the head is back, you will need to push the lamb back into the uterus, so you can turn the head around. You should attach a lambing rope to each leg so you don't lose them. The lamb should not be pulled out by the jaw. A lamb with a broken jaw cannot suck and will likely die. You can use the eye sockets to pull the lamb's head.

Disproportionate size (tight birth)
Many lambing difficulties are due to the disproportionate size of the lamb and ewe. This can be the result of a large lamb, a small pelvic opening, or both. It is most common with young ewes and flocks that have a majority of single births. Lubrication and gentle, but firm assistance will usually alleviate the problem. You may have to pull the skin over the head. Extending one leg at at time may also help.

A "true" breech birth is when the lamb is positioned backwards, with the rear legs tucked under and only the tail near the opening. A breech birth is common when the ewe has been straining for a long time and there is very little discharge and only a small water bag.

To deliver a breech lamb, the first thing you have to do is bring the rear legs forward by cupping the fetlocks in your palm. Once the rear legs are forward, you need to quickly deliver the lamb because once the umbilical cord breaks, the lamb will begin breathing and could risk drowning in its own fluidS.

Swollen head
If the head has been outside the vulva for a long time, it may have become very swollen. The tongue may be sticking out. While it may appear cold and dead, a lamb can survive for long periods of time in this position. If the head is covered with straw and feces, it will need to be washed beofre being returned to the uterus. Plenty of lubricant should be used. Margarine is an excellent lubricant for this purpose. If the lamb is dead, it is often easier to remove the head.

Simultaneous births
Sometimes, lambs are presented with their legs intertwined. Before attempting to deliver these lambs, you need to determine which legs belong to which head. It may be necessary to repel one lamb to allow easy delivery of the other. Ewes carrying triplets often have a higher percent of malpresented lambs, so flocks with high lambing rates require closer supervision during lambing.

Dead and deformed lambs
The removal of delivery dead and deformed lambs often requires veterinary assistance. Deformed lambs often cannot pass through the birth canal. If a lamb is freshly dead, it may be possible to extract it, but lambs lambs that have been dead for some time often must be removed in pieces.

If your flock experiences excessive lambing problems, you need to consider your breeding and nutrition problems. For example, a lot of oversized lambs could mean you are overfeeding you ewes during late pregnancy or using too large of a sire breed on your ewes. In addition, ewe lambs should not be bred until they have developed sufficiently. The rule of thumb is not to breed ewe lambs unless they have acheived approximately 70 percent of the mature weight.


Failure of the cervix to dilate is called "ringwomb." It is one of the most difficult lambing problems to deal with. True ringwomb does not usually resond to any medical treatment or to manipulation of the cervix. A caesarian section is usually the only viable option.

Ewes experiencing ringwomb should probably be removed from the flock. Ringwomb occurs most commonly in ewe lambs. Selenium deficiency is considered to be a contributing factor, but the condition is not fully understood. Its exact cause is unknown, though it is believed to have a genetic component.

After Lambing

After a normal lambing, the ewe can usually take care of her newborn lambs. It is best not to interfere. In unusual cases, it may be necessary to wipe the mucous from the lamb's nostrils to permit breathing. You'll want to make sure that the ewe claims each of her lambs and allows them to nurse. A vigorous lamb will get up and nurse within a half hour to an hour after birth. Make sure each lamb gets colostrum, the first milk produced after lambing.

She's very pregnant.

Pregnant ewe  

Baby on the way

Water Bag

Lamb being born
Nornal Birth
Birth of a lamb

Successful birth

Backwards presentation


Elbow lock
Elbow lock

One leg back
One leg back
Both legs back
Both legs back
Head back
Head back
Breech presentation

front and back
Front and back
Pasture lambing

Lambing is natural

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Third Stage: Real Labor

       About 1 to 3 hours before birth, the ewe will act more uncomfortable andf may get up and lie down more frequently. as the contractions begin, she nay roll a bit and paddle slightly with her feet, as though she were swimming. aws the contractions increase, she will often point her nose in the air and let out a grunt. short after, the water bag will emerge and soon break. don'y worry if the ewe gets up and walks around with the water hanging out; she is just trying to find a more comfortabl;e position. the lamb will begin to appear soon thereafte. if uit hasn't started to emerge after 30 minutes of hard labor ( indicated by heavy straining and grunting) get help.
      Mine out of 10 delivers happen without problems. in normal births, the lamb's front feet and head appear first. however, several abnormal lambing positions can occur, which are futher complicated if the ewe is carrying twins or triplets..          

Second Stage: Early labor

     About 6 to 12 hours before birth, the ewe may appear uncomfortable and begin to paw at the ground before lying down. during this stage, she is restless and may stand up and lie down frequently. the ewe will be unhappy if you attempt to pen her up at this time, because she wants to choose her own nest. be patient; observe, but do not bother her. she may occasionally roll over on her side, grunt, then roll back to a nornal resting postion. she may go to many different locations in the barn pr pasture before choosing her final birthing spot.

First Stage: Dropping of the Lamb.

      About 24 hours beforte birth, the ewe's abdomen will appear to droop. this dropping of the lamb produces noticeable trangular- shaped hollows just in front of the hipbone.

Lambing Time!!!!!!!

      About a week or two before you think the ewe will lamb, start checking the developoment of her udder-- a process called bagging the ewe-- which often gets larger as lambing time nears. however, udder size is not always a dependable sign. some ewes devlop large udders up to 3 weeks before lambing, whereas others have almost no udder development until after the lamb is born.
       If your ewe gose off her feed or shows any signs of illness close to lambing time, consult your veterinarian immediately. sudden signs of illness before lambing could indicate pregnancy toxemia. signs of illness just before or after lambing could also be the result of calcium deficiency. the symptons of both opf these conditions arre similier, but either disorder is considered an emergency. call your veterinarian at once; he or she can tell the difference and treat the illness immediately.


   A yearling ewe that has twins her first time is more valuable than one who lambs with a single, even through ewes with a future history of twinning may only have a single that first time. still, they pass on both the inherited ability to have twins and they will produce more lambs during their lifetime.

Feeding in the last 4-5 weeks before Lambing.

    By the 4th month of Pregnancy, ewes need about tiomes as much water as they did before pregnancy. and since 70 percent of the growth of unborn lambs takes place in the last 5-to-6 week period, the feed must have adequate calories and nutritional balance to support that growth. during the last month of gestation, thew lamb fetuses becomes so large that they displace much of the space peviously occupiesby the rumen. This necessitates more high-protein feed and less roughage feed, as the ewes are not able to ingest sufficent roughahe, or large quantities of any low energy feed, to support themselves or the growing lamb(s),  which causes them to utilize excessive quantities of stored fat reserves, and can in turn lead to pregnancy toxemia. poor energy supplementation can also result in hypoglycemia(lowered blood sugar), wgich mimics the symptoms of prewgnancy toxemia. pregnancy toxemia is not necessarily a "thin ewe" problem. a good gain mix would be 1/3 whole oats, 1/3 shelled corn, and 1/3 wheat(for the selenium content). barley is a good feed in areas where available. grain rations can be supplemented to 12 to 15 percent protein content with soybeans meal or other protein source. grain and hay should be given on a regular schedule, to avoid the risk of triggering pregnancy disease or enterotoxemia by ettatic eating. approximately one pound of grain per day(more for larger ewes) is a good rule of thumb.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Lamb info for the first 10 days

Lambs can stand about 10-20 minutes after they are born.
They only eat milk for the first 10 days.
Lambs can eat feed at 10 days old. 
You need to dock there tails at about 3-7 days.
Wean at 8 weeks old.

Here is a list of things you might want to know about having Lambs.

The 1st thing is they are really cute for the first 4 weeks.

The 2rd thing is you can't pick them up after they are about 2-3 weeks old.

The 3nd thing you should pick them up every day so they can get used to you being around.

the 4th thing is lambs love to play.  (http://youtu.be/ren--78GoG4)


29 days to go. but they could come anytime after the 24th.

      Well i only have 29 days to go but they could come anytime after the 24th of Feb. I think all my ewes are pregnant. I checked them again on sunday night. there all are starting to get milk in there udders. I still need to pick a letter.  I will try to catch some of my ewes giving birth.