After the horrors of our first lambing experience, Will and I were understandably shaken. Saturday we moved the electric sheep netting back and went about our usual farm chores. By late afternoon we were in the pasture for the pigs’ afternoon feeding when I noticed that only three of the sheep were in field. Will hopped the fence and ran up to the woods and there he found our ewe licking clean her newly birthed lamb.
I ran into the house to grab a towel and some iodine. When I got back, the lamb was looking a bit light on its feet and mama wouldn’t let her nurse, so Will scooped her up, disinfected her umbilical cord and gave her a squirt of sheep drench, which is like instant energy in a liquid form (think the sheep equivalent of the goo marathoners use when they run out of steam). He returned her to her mama and that extra boost of pep helped her persevere and eventually latch on to an udder. The sound of a baby suckling, I don’t care what species, may be the most relieving sound in the world.
Despite the tragic loss of the prior evening, there we stood watching this new little life that came into the world with no help from us whatsoever. I couldn’t be happier. It feels like Red Row Farm has been redeemed.