I came home from work feeling pretty beat - a subject for another post. I decided the world could do without me for awhile, so I went up to take a short nap. My husband came up from feeding and told me that Audrey hadn't come in with the other sheep - and that he found her in the pasture with twins - looked like one white and one black (kind of normal distribution around here).
Well, that got me up off my lazy bones; I called to the young one to help out and we put on our boots and jackets and headed out into the rain. Sometimes finding a sheep in the pasture isn't so easy, but thankfully she was right on the edge of a patch of trees, clearly visible.
Only thing was, as I got closer, I could see two black lambs and I wondered how my husband had gotten it so wrong - until I saw the little brown and white baby tucked into a little hollow at a tree root. Audrey had triplets! I guess she felt like she had to make up for only having a single baby last August. No wonder the poor girl was so uncomfortable these last few days - rocking from foot to foot and sighing. No wonder I couldn't figure out what was going on - I could feel one lamb, must have been the brown and white one and the other side just felt off.
The little black lambs are fairly small, one ewe and one ram, while the brown and white ewe lamb is more of a normal size. I feel so fortunate that it is Audrey who had the triplets - she is the best ewe mother I have seen, in my limited experience. She is able to count, for one - she knows she has three and she checks them constantly. She has lots of milk, too.
It was a fairly back breaking chore to get her in from the way back of the pasture - you know how if you lift a lamb above a ewe's head and she can't see it - even if the lamb is bawling its head off? Yeah, my husband didn't believe it - he said, "Oh just carry them normally, she'll follow." Yeah, right. If I straightened up for even a few steps, Audrey started heading back to where she thought she left them at high speed. Eventually, though, we got them all tucked in - we kicked Elvis out of his ram stall and threw him in with the others in the general milling area and let Audrey and family take up residence. Buddy and as yet unnamed sister were mighty curious about the new lambs, but they had to satisfy their curiosity through the wire fence.
We've had so much rain in the last month and last night it was thunder storms on top of the pounding rain. It's not an ideal climate for either sheep or horses, but this hybrid hair breed (Katahdin/Barbados) are pretty hardy. In the past year and a half that we've owned these sheep, through 6 lambings, we haven't had to help with even one. It was the Dorper ewe that had the trouble. I really liked the Dopers, but they didn't thrive like these hybrids.
Time to end the marathon post. I still have one ewe lamb unnamed from December - so now I need help with these three, too. Any suggestions?