Sunday, 23 August 2009

The misery that is Summer 2009


I lost a lamb today. Smali Tomas, the grey katmoget twin. I'm not sure what of; he was just lying dead like he had fallen asleep. He always was a bit of a runt and I didn't give him or his brother 24 hrs at birth. Actually I expected to loose his brother but he has now picked up and is doing nicely.

The worst thing is that I know that I ought to have split the twins and given one to Robina when hers was taken by a predator. Perhaps then he would have survived. But I didn't: I was going to Norway for work the next day and didn't want to leave Chris with a problem if Robina rejected him.

We are having the most horrendous weather here and I suspect that he was small and weak and simply couldn't cope with this prolonged wet horribleness :o( The girls have now weaned their lambs and I think that this was perhaps just too much for him although he was trotting round with his brother and didn't look ill, he just wasn't growing.

The wet weather is affecting all of the sheep, but at least the rest are now putting on condition again. I have to get everyone in every day and tend to feet though. All hoof stock are suffering around here, my friends' horses feet included.

Sigh. I'm feeling really low right now, yet as I write this the sky is brightening through the still lashing rain. Things have to pick up soon, don't they?

11 comments:

Michelle said...

I'm so sorry to hear about Tomas. Our weather has been hot and dry; hard on me but easier on the livestock than wet and cold, I imagine. I hope you get some real summer to dispel the gloom inside and out.

Rayna said...

Always hard to lose a babe, espically when it's one who fought so hard against the odds. Hopefully the weather picks up for you guys!

Denise said...

So sorry to hear about your loss. We had this problem last year, with the wet summer, can I suggest that you get a worm count done, we did and were amazed at the results

TIGGYWINKLE said...

How sad, Jenny to lose the little one. The wet weather this year has really played havoc with everything - Animals, crops, gardens, the birds. It is very disheartening, and obviously a lot of extra work for you. No wonder you feel a little down. Maybe we will have a mild dry Winter.

Doreen said...

I am so sorry that you lost the wee one. No matter how tiny or how weak it is still a big loss and it does hurt when we lose any one of our animals. It is no wonder you feel a bit down even if the weather was good. I hope it starts to pick up for you soon though.

Laura said...

It could be clostridium. Even if they are vaccinated against it they can still get it (some times the vaccines don't work.) Clostidium kills fast. They are fine and healthy and then next time you see them they are dead. Last year I lost 4 or 5 lambs from clostridium (and I had vaccinated them with CDT.) I got 2 of them necropsied and that is how I found out what they died from. My vet said re vaccinating them could help. If you lose any more you should get a necropsy done.

Normally sheep only get clostidium on high grain diets, but mine were on 100% pasture. The only thing we could think of was it had rained for a while and more dirt was touching the grass and eaten. Dirt can carry closridium.

Hopefully you don't lose any more!and as a local shepherd says "the more animals you raise the more (and weirder problems you will get.)"

Tammy W. said...

Oh Jenny - that is so heartbreaking, I can really feel for you. It is always so distressing when we lose a little one. I am hoping for blue and sunny skies for you and your flock.

~Tonia said...

ALos sometime sit could be something internally didnt develop just right and it took it while to show up and there may have been nothign you could do. But its still hard!!

Pondside said...

It's the hardest thing about working with animals. Nothing you could have done about it, most likely - but here's hope for better days ahead.

Deborah said...

So sorry about your loss. What an adorable little lamb.

Jenny Holden said...

Thanks so much for all your kind comments folks. I've now moved the sheep to new pasture and invested in the newest fluke blasting drench for them. No doubt horrendous for the environment, but I don't use it unless need be.