Beginning on March 15th, our oldest lambs will be one month old. At this stage, certain lambs begin to stand out because of behavior or personality, the interesting genetics they carry, or some physical feature that catches the eye. After another month or two, I will know most of them individually — recognizing them as they come by, and being able to reunite a separated lamb with the appropriate ewe.
I thought you might be interested in some of my observations to date about some of the lambs whose photos you may have seen on the 2015 Lambs page, so I thought I’d share them here.
♦January’s boys (October, Ogos, and Otsail) can almost always be found in a pile — a blur of white. Although you would think three white ram lambs would be easily mistaken for each other, they are as individual as their names. Yet for all of their differences (size, face shape, and wool type), they are a threesome. For a long time, they would eat, sleep and play together as a single unit; but in the past week, Otsail has begun to follow the warmth of the sun on the straw for resting. The other two are still always found together, regardless of what they are up to!
♦Ireland’s boy, Oman, is always lost. There is seldom a time when I am heading to the barn when I don’t hear Ireland’s plaintive shouts calling her boy. In the beginning I would panic, thinking he might have frozen in the cold or gotten caught in a feeder, but now I know better. Oman is an individual who doesn’t like to be told what to do. He is his own man, and having his mother call him all the time reduces his “street cred” among “the guys.” He will come when he’s ready and not before!
♦Ilaina’s triplets, Oksana, Olana, and Obadiah, are beautiful lambs. Their rich dark moorit colors catch the eye, regardless of when or where I see them. I only hope the quality of their fleece is as impressive as they look from afar!
♦Kabernet’s twins, Onaka and OJ, are probably the rolly-polliest lambs we have had in a while. While their roundness is a combination of good eating from Kabernet’s “milk bar” and their quickly growing Romney wool, you can’t help but think of bear cubs when you see them – or help but smile as they gambol away!
♦January’s first-born boy, October, and Hope’s last-born boy, Oath, are both our skinniest lambs. It’s not unusual in triplets to have one lamb begin smaller than the others — and that is true for both of these boys. Although we have supplemented both of them with a bottle here and there, they have decided to go it alone, getting by on what they can receive from their dams. They stand thin and bony among their sibs but firmly refuse our bottle, instead waiting for the right opportunity to slip in and get a sip from Mom. Now, as the weather gets warmer, they are thankfully beginning to put on more weight and round out a bit.
♦Millie’s girl, Ossidy, is probably our most nervous lamb. We often pick up the ewe lambs and spend a bit of time scratching under their chins and getting to know them. This makes them both more friendly as adults and easier to catch (if they know they’ll be put back down in short order). Yet Ossidy is a “wild thing” just as her mother was, running as soon as humans enter the barn and keeping a close eye on our doings. After all, she wouldn’t want to put herself in a position of being caught — for anything, good or bad!
♦Jypsi’s twin rams, Opus and Octave, stand out because of their color patterns. They each carry the very rare Swiss Markings pattern with its interesting paler markings around their eyes. When they glance up at you, you know you’re looking at something unusual, and I can’t wait to see how they turn out as they grow. One of them may end up here long term as we hope to add more of this pattern to our flock.
♦And speaking of this interesting pattern, Kaylen’s ewe twins, OdaMae and Odelia, also have the same interesting eyes because they, too, carry the Swiss Markings pattern. Even more interesting is the fact that I’ve been able to flip it into the moorit coloring in Odelia. OdaMae carries moorit, too, even though it is not obvious, so either one could eventually give us more moorit Swiss Markings lambs in the future.
♦Maisie’s boy, Outlaw, is one of the most beautiful Romney ram lambs I think we’ve ever produced. He is jet black, with clear eyes, a nice sturdy well-planted body, and tiny tight curls in his fleece. If he grows well, he may join our flock as a replacement for his sire, McGuyver. We will have to wait and see.
♦Lisbeth’s boy, Obsidian, is also a solid black ram, which is fairly hard to find in the Romeldale breed. He is quite a mellow fellow, calm and cool as approached, and happy to have a chin scratch if we offer. This is just the way we like our boys!
♦Both Osage (Ivy’s girl) and Ocarina (Nypsi’s girl) have caught my eye. They have lovely dark fleece and striking markings. I wouldn’t be surprised if one of them ends up in our flock — and it will be a difficult decision as to which one.
We have only four more lambs (all Romney) scheduled to arrive either this week or next, and then lambing 2015 will come to an end for Peeper Hollow Farm!