Having enjoyed a lovely Easter weekend in Devon with the family, the following weekend we had the opportunity to help out with lambing season at a small sheep farm in the Shropshire Hills. Not dissimilar from the Somerset countryside in which we grew up, Hope Valley (12 miles south west of Shrewsbury) boasts beautiful rolling green hills beneath the backdrop of the dramatic rocky ridge of the Stiperstones.
Having been exposed to the lambing experience before I knew what to expect. When the reality of the situation set in and it dawned upon us that lives were at stake, myself and Bethan confidently adopted our roles as the passers of crucial implements and feeders of the less-able lambs!
It’s a wonderful and surprising experience and I would encourage anyone to take up the opportunity to visit a farm in lambing season. I was quite amazed how relatively hopeless these animals seemed to be at the birthing experience, if the ewe does manage to give birth on her own, the lamb still arrives so covered in fluid that it can suffocate if its airways are not cleared. It’s a hands-on event and one certainly not for the squeamish!
On the flip side it is quite amazing to see how quickly the tiny lambs get up to take their first few steps and their desire within a day or two to start bouncing around the fields strikes you with how different these youngsters are from their adult counterparts.
Much of the weekend was spent worrying for one little lamb (christened “Annie” by Bethan) who was born as a triplet but as the smallest sibling was abandoned by her mother. For those who follow Decorator’s Notebook on Instagram and have been worrying about her future, we can announce that on Tuesday she was adopted by another Ewe with a new single brother for her to play with!
Don’t you just love a happy ending!
Follow @decoratorsnotes on Instagram for more of our adventures on the road!