12 February 2010

Cameroon sheep cross lambing is in progress !

I've taken a break from blogging for a while to concentrate on other things but I can't resist showing you some photos of some of our lambs born this month. They are from our sheep who are a mixed bunch of "normal" girls crossed with our Cameroon ram. We decided to try this cross because last year we had a surprise lamb who was a Cameroon cross and he grew fast and was extremely hardy - out in all weathers yet big boned and heavy like his mother. This might not be the most appropriate time to say this but the meat was wonderful !

That's him in the middle of the photo at about five months. His sire is the brown strange looking horned ram top left. We inherited most of our sheep from Fabrice's family and we kept a small herd going of about thirty through a period of some very low lamb prices. We've chosen new rams to improve the conformation and increase the hardiness of the flock as the summer grass has been affected by the droughts we've been having for the past few years and winters seem to be getting colder.

Now our lamb is selling well locally and it's very nice when the work involved in keeping them is rewarded with a decent regular income.

We've had the Cameroon sheep for a few years. They're easy to manage, out in all weathers and graze contentedly where there doesn't seem to be a lot for them to eat. We decided to leave the Cameroon ram with all the ewes.

Unfortunately, we have Blue Tongue disease in France and were obliged to have our sheep vaccinated early in their pregnancy. We've had a lot of miscarriages, so many of our ewes aren't going to have lambs at what is (for us) the best time of the year when they are inside on straw because of the weather and easy to keep an eye on.

So far we've had six lambs, all easy births, all fine healthy lambs who fed easily and quickly as soon as they were on their feet but all singles - which is a bit of disappointment because we normally have a lot of twins and sometimes even triplets. Still, the lambs are beautiful chunky wee things and we should have some more later on in the season.

11 comments:

a.rogue said...

Thank you for posting this! The are beautiful!!
Good luck with the rest,
Alice

Mouse said...

Can I post my CV?
I spent a very happy few winters working with the local vets and am quite good at disentangling twisted legs in order to coax the lambs out.

La Ferme de Sourrou said...

Miss Mouse,

You should have told me - I've cut all my nails off for nothing now !

Thanks Alice.

The Cottage Garden Farmer said...

Your lambs are just lovely, I so wish I had room for some myself, next best thing is reading about yours. Good luck with the rest or lambing.

オテモヤン said...
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Bob said...

Good to have you back. I love reading about your life in the French countryside. I love brown sheep!

Steelkitten said...

How wonderful to have an animal like that in your flock! And great that you're adapting step by step to the environment as it changes around you.

Eco Gites of Lenault said...

We only have three ewes - one has already lambed - on her own but rejected one, the second needed help with her first and I thought it was going to be stillborn (now doing well) and the third is a Mum in waiting. As for nail cutting, I was convinced I would use my right hand so only cut those nails. Luckily I have very soft nails and I could break the ones off my left hand which I actually needed!!

Touring in Brittany said...

I love them and my daughter (4) too...

TheTravelBug said...

Never heard of a Camaroon sheep? But great photos of your lambs.

Rachel
Get One Step Ahead in Farming - visit Gofarmer

incontinence supplies said...
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