A Tumble Creek Farm Ewe

A Tumble Creek Farm Ewe
One of many

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

A Warming Trend

While the East Coast is below zero, here on the West Coast we are having a warming trend. The next two weeks should be, as forecast, in the high 20s at night and up to 50+ for daytime temps. What a great time for me to start shearing the expecting ewes. Lambing should start here in early February so I started on the first eight yesterday. This ewe pictured is Emma and this is her second shearing. Some of the white flock is in the background happily chewing.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Happy New Year!

Now that the holidays are over and my daughter is back to college, I will get back to life on the farm. We had a wonderful Christmas with the family and friends. There was a good snowfall in mid-December and it stayed for a long time. We were too busy inside to have any time to play outside on Christmas Day. The grandkids love to make snow angels and I find them all over the yard when they leave. The quail seem to find something under the trees and the sun shines pink and yellow on the mountains.
  Yesterday I sheared two of my ewe lambs that will be shown as yearlings this year. The pregnant ewes will be sheared in the next two weeks with lambing commencing in early February.
  This is a busy time of getting all the tools and equipment assembled, plus putting the lambing pens back together. They are separate panels that are put together to make 5 x 5 pens for the new family groups. When not in use they are taken apart and stand against the lamb creep fence.
  After the lambs are a week old I will put up a divider fence in my barn and between the last two 12' feeders for a creep. I have a creep gate with a man gate on one end so I don't have to jump over the fences in the barn. This was at the Black Sheep Gathering last year so just had to add it to my collection. I already had a six foot creep gate that I will now set up in the pasture to continue feeding the lambs after mid-April.
  We flood irrigate here so until the water comes on in April there is no drinking water in the fields unless I put it there. And the grass is just not up year-round to make it worth having them out there. Sometimes on sunny days I run the ewes out there for exercise and new scenery, but they always want to know what is going on in the barn.
  I am seeing a faint shade of green which is promising. This spring will bring tilling one small field and replanting. What will take the most time if picking up the rocks that the tiller will expose. This area is volcanic and we have about 6-12 inches of dirt on top of the rock shelf. Unless the rock comes up to the surface I don't go looking for it. Of course there are places where it is deeper soil and I am learning my field.
  The sheep think they are starving so I will bid you a good day. Enjoy!