Friday 30 May 2014

Roller coaster week

The last week has been a roller coaster of emotions, those of you who follow us on twitter will have seen last Friday was the day from hell.  I had decided on Thursday night that I was going to call the vet out Friday to look at Ursula who was on 340 days (her average was 348) but she just wasn't quite herself.  Temperature, colour and all other observations were normal but there was just something that wasn't Ursula.  She had been sitting a fair bit, but that's not unusual for someone so close to giving birth.

To cut a long story short just as the vet arrived she went into labour, but it was obvious things weren't right.  I established that the baby wasn't coming the right way, the head was down, neck all bent and no legs.  I could also feel no signs of life; whilst all this was going on Imala, who was well over due was also in labour and I noticed there was a head and no feet!

Thankfully it was easy finding feet for Imala so with the legs released we left Imala to get on with things.

For poor Ursula it took the vet quite some time to re-position the cria and get it out, sadly as I suspected the lovely brown girl was dead.  Shortly after things went from bad to worse and Ursula took a turn for the worse and we lost her too.  It was such a shock, neither us or the vet were expecting it.  We are awaiting the results of the postmortem.

Imala's baby, who we have named Pixie gave us the strength to carry on, but as you can imagine her arrival was tinged with sadness at the loss of the much loved Ursula and her first daughter.

Pixie is  going just great, this was on of the rare occasions she was actually still!

Monday we were at the Northumberland County Show, thankfully Gill, Ross & Taylor had agreed to farm sit, as you can imagine I didn't want to leave anyone for any length of time and I knew they were in safe hands.

We had a great show, 8 animals, 5 1st, 2 2nd and 1 3rd place rosettes and two championship sashes.

First up was Ashling, she was the cria born from my Futurity purchase, 2nd place Junior grey female.

Next up was Wonder, 1st place intermediate black female, she is out of our brown stud Darwin.

Then there was Ankha, 1st place intermediate brown female, from Golden Guinea.

Next in was the fawn boys, Zoom came 1st (out of Cambridge Southwind) and Pablo 2nd (out of Golden Guinea).

Zoom was also awarded Male Fawn Champion, I thought I'd post this as I'm actually smiling and that never seems to happen very often on photos!!

Back to pulling a face with Elfrida, 1st place Junior light female and light female champion, she is out of Gianmarco's Masterpiece.

And another face, this time with Diamanta, she came 3rd junior white female. 

And last up for team Barnacre was Plato, 2nd Intermediate white male.

We were very happy bunnies, and I was en happier when I got home because everyone was ok and Gill had dinner cooked!!

Thursday 22 May 2014

Grey't Expectations

Tuesday saw the arrival of our second cria of the year, off I toddled out in my pj's at 5.15am to check the girls over to find a gathering round a laid down Highland Rose, I knew something was going on; and boy was something going on, there was a nose and two legs sticking out!

Rose went on to have the cria laid down, she only stood up once during the whole birth, in fact she was so relaxed the cria almost dragged itself out once the shoulders were out!

It was kushed within two minutes and had been inspect by the whole herd, in fact Vitoria, the matriarch in this filed, had tried to walk off with the baby once as Rose was so chilled and contracting on passing the placenta!

She, yes its's a girl, and a grey girl (!!), a lovely rose grey girl, was born at 340 days gestation but was a little down on her pasterns, however these are already starting to lift.  She was a fantastic 10.07kg so it's probably a good job she didn't hang on to her too long as Rose isn't that big herself.

Today we have had another of the goat girls give birth to a single female kid, unfortunately she doesn't like it; so at the minute!  There's always something going on here! 

On that not I'll go and feed my bottle lambs and see if the little goat kid will take any bottle, we're not getting very far at the minute!!

Monday 19 May 2014

Miracle Cria??

We have had our first cria of the year, and he's a bit special for a few reasons, in fact he's a bit of a miracle really; let me explain.

Sunburst had outside matings booked and as he was only just starting his working life we needed to make sure he would work before he had visiting ladies.  So on 11th May 2013 Carol was the lucky lady, or so we thought; she took a little persuading but like a true pro Sunburst got her down and did the deed, 13 minutes later he was one happy boy!

A week later she went mad when we put her back to Sunburst, as she did for the next three weeks, so we were very hopeful.  As she'd not been too keen to mate and Carol is slightly mad and it was the first Sunburst mating we thought we would get her scanned.

At 45 days she was scanned empty, not wanting to believe Sam, our vet I decided to wait until he did the next batch of scanning and try her again.  Still spitting off and with a fancy new scanning machine she was scanned again at 81 days, both rectally and trans-abdominally, both negative.  So extremely disappointed the vet estrumated her thinking she had a retained corpus luteum.  This drug is also to terminate pregnancies, so if Carol was pregnant she would/should have aborted her cria.

Despite numerous attempts throughout the summer we never managed to mate Carol to Sunburst or any other male (we tried a few!).

Early in the new year I though Carol was looking pregnant, thinking I was mad I dismissed the idea, but it became more and more noticeable.  So next worry was would the Estrumate have caused any birth defects or damage?  The vet had never known estrumate not to work so it was a wait and see thing.

Well cooked at 367 days Carol decided to finally give birth, to a healthy 9.56kg fawn boy; phew!

He has a lovely bright shine fleece, as we have found with quite a few well cooked babies it was quite suri like, but is now starting to tighten up.

He is always on the go and desperate for a playmate so we're hoping he wont have long to wait.  We have 13 girls over 330 days now, Imala is furthest on at 362!

Paul has named him Invisible Sam, after the Queen song, Invisible man, and our vet Sam who saw right through him on two scanned.  For anyone not familiar with the lyrics..... 

"I'm the invisible man,
I'm the invisible man
Incredible how you can
See right through me
I'm the invisible man
I'm the invisible man
It's criminal how I can
See right through you."

Friday 16 May 2014

Lambing over for another year

Today the very last of our lambs has been born, she seems to have had her legs crossed for well over a week now, but she finished us off with a lovely brown girl, so well worth the wait!

We started off with the blackies who lambed out on hill.

I lambed the texels (my original pet lambs) in one of the barns.  They were tupped at exactly the same time as the blackies but hung on a little longer, which meant quite a few needed help to enter the world.  Texel tend to have big heads as it is.  Faith, my niece was on hand to help one day!

I'm not so sure letting her loose with the Iodine was a good idea though!
I also lambed the Shetlands in the barn, they are so sweet, at one point we were 8 nil to the girls but the boys caught up in the end and we were 11/10.  They are so bouncy and like grease lightening!
And ultra cute!

Taylor liked this one.

I think Paul likes Maisie!  Shes daughter of my very first pet lamb Mia who is ery special and thinks she's a short alpaca.  Mia was very poorly after giving birth so Maisie has ended up on the bottle, which Mia quite likes as she still remembers how nice lamb milk is!!

This little tiny tot has to be one of my favorites, she's half a lamb!