Just buried two lambs this morning.

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9 years 7 months ago #493196 by muri

tonic;498159 wrote: Sorry to hear about your lambs, we have had our worst lambing ever here...I have often looked with interest at the Damara sheep, wondering about trying a few of them alongside my Wiltshires.

What i am trying to do is to put the Damara and wiltshires together to get a good set of genetics with a lot of good qualities.
This is known as the meatmaster sheep (damara crossed with another hair sheep ie a wiltshire or a dorper]
My two pure Damara, imported from australia [not by me] were to go across some wiltshires so I would have sheep that didnt need shearing, but also nice and hardy. Of course the three lambs that died were the Damara and my two wiltshire Damara cross to get the whole thing rolling this year.

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9 years 7 months ago #493205 by tonic
Darn Muri, why do the ones you want/need the most often end up having problems?!

We started lambing with an expereinced ewe having lambs in a steep hill paddock rather than our flatter lambing paddock as I was ill, bronchitis, and she didn't look particularly due. One looked a bit slow but was on its feet and the ewe was sticking close to it. I was unable to get out into the cold air without having my lungs feel like they were seizing up, and the rest of the family had a bad cold so watched and left them to it up the hill. in the morning the lamb was dead, mum still right by it so it must have ahd something wrong or been too weak to get a drink. A ewe lamb from my best ewe that has produced rams the past 2 years...

Next set of twins had another slow one, which I warmed up and popped on mum a couple of times and then it was strong enough (still had bronchitis so it was a bit tough out in the cold woman-handling the ewe). This lamb had very underdeveloped upper neck muscles and held its neck at funny angle, slightly extended and tilted when it ran. Tended to canter rather than trot also. I had it checked at the vet the next day and they weren't sure what it was so watched it and it has come along fine.

Then we had a day when I checked all the ewes, looking fine, grazing together next to the house where I could see them well, in the morning. Went to town for a few hours and came back to a dead ewe, in rigour, no sign of birthing or struggle like she couldn't get up. So a lost ewe and her unborn lambs.

Next ewe had a single, all good, hurray!

Another ewe looked uncomfortable but I didn't see any bag etc. I kept checking her in the night but she was very active (fleeing every time I appeared) and I made the call to leave her a bit longer before checking.... wrong call! Trapped her later to find a head half out, three legs and a head right behind it. Pulled 2 dead lambs and had a cry at my poor decision making.

I have a ewe still to lamb, but having had a few weeks has moved me from not wanting any more lambs to looking forward to the next a bit cautiously. I haven't had lambing issues in years so I guess I got all mine at once so hopefully no more for a while!

One of my cows also lost her calf. I am sure it was not early, but it was weak and in a puddle when I found it. Got colostrum into it and brought it in for the night. At 4am it was able to keep standing if I helped it up and drunk for a bottle. At first it would chew rather than suck though and seemed stiff in the jaw? At 7am we took it back out to its mum, but it showed no interest in drinking. I ducked out to get some feed for mum to keep her still whilst I milked her and when I got back it was dead. From strong enough to stand unassisted, to dead in less than an hour. I really thought it was heading in the right direction too.

That was on my birthday. Later that evening I was feeling a little better, having had lunch with my family. Fed the chickens to see 2 of my cobbs having a bit of a stand off. They do that occasionally so I frowned at them and didn't think much of it, I had a cow to milk and foster calf to arrange. Walked back 10 minutes later and one of the cobbs was dead! Happy Birthday me!!

So, thats my sob story! May it all be behind me now and hopefully I have learned something and will be able to save a few more in trouble babies next time.

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9 years 7 months ago #493225 by hilldweller

tonic;498187 wrote: Another ewe looked uncomfortable but I didn't see any bag etc. I kept checking her in the night but she was very active (fleeing every time I appeared) and I made the call to leave her a bit longer before checking.... wrong call! Trapped her later to find a head half out, three legs and a head right behind it. Pulled 2 dead lambs and had a cry at my poor decision making.

Sorry to hear about all the dramas Tonic. Sometimes there's a pattern to these things and it's possible to find a cause but other times it's just random bad luck. Doesn't sound like you particularly made the wrong call with that ewe - it can be very difficult to tell if there's a problem. If you don't have a shed or pen to confine any 'suspects' in for observation that might be something worth considering for next year (and then of course you might find you don't need it!). Fingers crossed you've seen the last of the problems for this season.

hilldweller

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9 years 7 months ago #493231 by tonic
Thanks hilldweller, we have a corner of the lambing paddock where we can trap them fairly easily, she just seemed to be moving too normally to be in labour....but obviously I was wrong. I'm watching the last ewe who is probably not due for a couple of weeks, but I am too nervous not to look...

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9 years 7 months ago #493233 by LongRidge

tonic;498187 wrote: Went to town for a few hours and came back to a dead ewe, in rigour, no sign of birthing or struggle like she couldn't get up. So a lost ewe and her unborn lambs.

We had something like this with a ewe that had "ringwomb" (no, not ring worm). After we tried to open the womb at 10 am we left her until she started to do something. At 4 pm the cervix was still tight as, and the first lamb was rotten. So we killed her and did a ceasar but the second one didn't survive. Within 30 minutes the ewe was stiff and smelt rotten.
Thus, if you missed the waters breaking a couple of days before then the ewe can appear normal until it dies suddenly of blood poisoning.

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9 years 7 months ago #493258 by tonic
I guess that is possible. I have had this ewe for a few years and she is usually pretty obvious once in labour....but perhaps was different this year.

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9 years 7 months ago #493267 by Deanna
Ahhhh tonic, I'm sorry. What a shodding birthday. Cyber hugs.

25 acres, 1400 Blue Gums, Wiltshire sheep, 5 steers, 2 cows, ducks, chickens, bees, dog, cats, retired, 1 husband and 3 grandkids.

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9 years 7 months ago #493284 by LongRidge
tonic, according to that highly reliable reference source called "google", ringwomb usually occurs in ewes that have lambed before. Ours had lambed well three times before :-(.

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9 years 7 months ago #493285 by tonic

Deanna;498255 wrote: Ahhhh tonic, I'm sorry. What a shodding birthday. Cyber hugs.

Thanks Deanna, I just wrote it off for this year, next year willl be better [;)]

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9 years 7 months ago #493287 by funnyfarm331
You deserve to have another special day to replace your birthday, what a dreadful day you had.

Hope you are feeling much better :)

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9 years 7 months ago #493333 by tonic

funnyfarm331;498278 wrote: You deserve to have another special day to replace your birthday, what a dreadful day you had.

Hope you are feeling much better :)

Thanks, the kind comments have cheered me. Plus our place is on the market with and Open Home this weekend so I am pretty busy and distracted...

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9 years 7 months ago #493338 by Baroque
So sorry to read about your awful birthday :( big (((hugs))) from me too.

Hope the open home goes well for you. Bake some nice muffins and its sure to sell fast! [;)]

Breeding & training quality Spanish horses - THE horse of Kings! Also breeding Arapawa & Pitt Island sheep.

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9 years 7 months ago #493340 by muri
Where are you moving to Tonic, whats behind the move?

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9 years 7 months ago #493343 by tonic
We will be staying near Tauranga, husband works in the family business here. We built a house with family 6 years ago and love it here. However, their situation has changed and they need to move on. We can't afford to buy them out so someone else will get to enjoy our peaceful little spot. Just need to find someone wanting a very large house!

The reality is that we will have to downsize as our portion of the property will not get us much here in Tauranga...so will probably be down to just a few animals for our freezer and dairy.

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8 years 7 months ago #511632 by millview41
Replied by millview41 on topic Just buried two lambs this morning.

hilldweller;498119 wrote: That's one seriously pretty lamb :)


Yes it is a great looking lamb. I have about 20 damara's here, and they lamb twice per year and have receive the od triplets but quite a few twins.
The only thing I need to know is When does a Ram Lamb become sexually active, mine are all full blood damara's, but I do have about 4 Ram Lambs don't know that, so any one that does know, an answer would be appreciated, also anyone interested contact me if you want 1 or whatever.
I love these sheep as they do not try and get through the fences.
I also have a young Dorper ( White ) ram lamb about 9 months old and am wondering wether to x breed them as I have heard that Dorpers are hard on the fences.
:) :) :confused:

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