The spring lambing is complete on my farm as of yesterday. I enjoy lambing, the final product of months of planning. This lambing was all first time yearling ewes. These ewes I raised and retained for replacement ewes in my flock. How well they perform determines if I made good choices in keeping these ewes.
I am very pleased with this group of ewes. They were very strong in the mothering of their lambs. The young ewes bonded quickly with their lambs and keep track of them. Most of them are producing good milk and the lambs are growing. This is determined by how fast the lambs grow and gain weight in the first two weeks and until they are weaned. I was evaluating the ewes on milk production, so I weighed the lambs during the first three weeks.
I did have one lamb dead when I found it. I was not home during the day due to helping a family member in another town. The lamb was cleaned off, and had a swollen head. The swollen head meant there had been problems with delivery. The fact that the lamb was totally cleaned, the ewe was doing her job as a mother. If I had been there to assist the ewe with delivery, the lamb would have lived.
I did have to assist one ewe with a bad presentation. One of the legs did not move forward during labor. Once I moved the leg forward, the lamb was born. The other two yearling ewes had ten pound lambs, a little large for first time ewes.
From the twelve ewes, I had a total of 11 lambs, 9 single lambs with one dead. One ewe did not lamb. The last ewe to lamb gave birth to twins. Two of the lambs are fullblood Dorper, one ram and one ewe. The other lambs are 75% Dorper lambs. I will have six ewe lambs to add to my flock, and will sell the ram lambs either as market or breeding stock.
Overall, I am happy with the Spring Lambing 2022.