This Spring, I bought a yearling Border Leicester to add to my flock. I was pleased to learn that the breeder did not expose her ewes until they were yearlings to lamb at two. That is the same way I handle breeding here.
She and I agreed I would go pick up the ewe in a couple of weeks. And I started making plans. Then I got an email saying, the yearling had started to bag up, meaning she was developing an udder. So she and I started to make plans for me to pick up the ewe earlier than planned, since that usually means you have a few weeks.
The next morning, I got an email titled “Newest Development.” Yes – the yearling had lambed. Her milk was slow to come in. But with grain, she is producing well now, and feeding her little girl.
There are worse surprises in shepherding than getting a bonus, black, healthy ewelamb.
She is two weeks old now, traveled from Maryland to New York, and holding her own with the flock. And when she bounces, it is a delight to watch.