Sunday, April 30, 2006


As I mentioned last night, Zodiak thrilled me with twin, HST ewe lambs, both black and white. I couldn't have been happier. As you can see, the twin on the right has white, up onto her body. I'll register her as "flecket".
She's close enough to HST to make me smile! Her sister doesn't have full stockings on all four legs, so I'll refer to her as HsT. I love them both and will be keeping one...

I'm calling this little doll: "Bluff Country Make A Wish" (Wish). Although I will leave the option open for her future owners to chose a different name, if they so WISH ;-)

And this is MY baby: "Bluff Country Dream". Dream is a yuglet, Hst. I will be keeping her to add to my breeding program. I'm thinking that by breeding her to an HST ram, we can get four white socks on her offspring. Can you believe I'm already thinking about my BABIES' babies?????


Zaria greeted me, in the rain, at four o'clock this morning with twin, HST ram lambs!!! I almost couldn't believe my eyes! Although everyone was soaked, both boys were cleaned up and had obviously nursed. I put everyone into a warm, dry jug and dipped the boys' navels in iodine, then headed for work...

Meet "Bluff Country Crescendo" a black & white, yuglet, Hst (only two white socks and a white tip to his tail) and

"Bluff Country Grand Finale" ~ moorit & white (Flecket?) HST. These boys, especially Finale, seemed to have inherited their dam's incredible fleece. Both of these ram lambs, as well as Zodiak's girls are sired by Bluff Country Apocalypse (Paco) ~ my moorit & white, HST ram. Needless to say, we're quite happy with Paco.... ;-)
"Bluff Country Grand Finale"

Saturday, April 29, 2006


I'm going to bed. Cold & wet and up too late is not good when I'm sick to start with but I couldn't be more excited about Zodiak's beautfiul daughters! Pictures tomorrow (after work...)

Zodiak's in labor...

I got home from work to find my poor, dear Zodiak pawing at the floor in the nursery. She is in the early stages of labor. Zodiak is the ewe in the second picture on yesterday's post. I'm hoping she lambs fairly quickly because we don't have any lights in that barn and I have to get up at 4:30 in the morning for work... GO ZODIAK! ;-)

Friday, April 28, 2006

Ladies in Waiting (or "It Ain't Over 'Till The Fat Lady Sings!"

This is "Bluff Country Zaria" (photo taken 4/25)

and this is "Bluff Country Zodiak" 4/25 (sorry for the horrible angle, but you get the point!)
These are the last two girls to lamb in the Bluff Country, this year. Both are Zorro daughters, both are bred to Paco. They sure look, to me, like they're getting close...

Meanwhile: the lambs are growing. We have really got an exceptional bunch of babies this year! Once everyone has delivered I will try to sit down and do some 'critical evaluations', but from first impressions, I'm very pleased with this year's lamb crop.
I'll share my thoughts, regarding each lamb, as I perform the evaluations. Stay're gonna LOVE watching these babies grow! ;-)

Thursday, April 27, 2006

More babies...

I left work early today. I seem to be coming down with a cold...scratchy throat, cough, my eyes burn.... I got home just in time to see Zanex cleaning off a freshly born black/krunet (white cap on his head) ram lamb. The little guy was on his feet in minutes and I sat with them while Zanex delivered his twin sister ~
a lovely, moorit ewe lamb with a splash of white on her head. Very typical markings for my HST breeding stock. Although these lambs may not LOOK all that flashy, they carry the genetic potential to throw HST marked offspring. Plus, they're still beautiful ;-) I stuck around long enough to dip the babies cords in iodine and give Zanex some de-wormer, then headed into the house for a NAP...

Wednesday, April 26, 2006


This beautiful ram-lamb, son of Zest & Bravo has finally got a name. For some reason, his white cap has always reminded me of the Pope's cap (I hope that doesn't offend anyone ~ it's just what I thought of!) and the fact that he has THREE white legs, instead of four.... Meet: "BLUFF COUNTRY TRINITY". Do you like it? I do, but I have to admit, it feels strange calling him by a name! Trinity and his sister Bella are growing like weeds and I am SO pleased with what nice lambs they are.

In the meantime, KitKat's twin ram-lambs are really winning me over. I call the dark chocolate one "Hershey" and the light chocolate one "Nestle" could be Hershey Kiss and Nestle Crunch....what do you think???

Tuesday, April 25, 2006


It's like she knew. When I got home from work, yesterday, I discovered that Phoebe (the white ewe who stole Savannah's daughter) had lambed. Phoebe had a black ewe lamb with white on her head that looks like a twin to Whisper! I didn't even realize that there was a new baby at first. It wasn't until I saw Whisper AND the new baby BOTH by Phoebe that I realized there was a new lamb. I actually had to pick up both girls and look at their bellies (umbilical cords) to tell which one was the new one! It's as if Phoebe knew that her lamb was going to be black with a splash of white on her head and wanted a twin sister for her little girl...I'm calling the new baby "Bluff Country Premonition". Phoebe is being a wonderful mom to both of "her" babies. I gave 'Premo' (pronounced Pree-mo), the colostrum I'd collected from the other new moms and hope that she'll get enough immunity from it to tide her over till she develops her own. I'm going to give her a CDT shot tonight, just to be on the safe side.

Phoebe with her "twin daughters"

In the meantime....Diva and her flashy son, Rock Star were turned out of the jug and onto the pasture for the first time. Rocky's doing great and Diva is a fiercely protective mom. Here's a shot of Kokomo coming up to get acquainted with the Rock Star...

...and Diva "protecting" her son from the fearsome creature that Kokomo obviously is!

...three more girls to go....

Sunday, April 23, 2006


Ladies and Gentlemen,it is with great pride that I present: "Diva" and the Rock Star!

Introducing "Bluff Country Rock Star" (aka: "Rocky") 7 pound, moorit & white, flecket ram lamb out of Sheltering Pines Diva. Mother and son are doing WONDERFULLY!

Shetland People..

Before I get swept up in the events of today, I want to take a moment to thank some very dear people. I had quite the scare, yesterday, when my beautiful little "Diva" (moorit & white, HST that I bought from Stephen Rouse, last summer) started acting VERY strangely. She laid on her side, tossed her head about, strained and then flipped over on to her back, seemingly struggling. I couldn't imagine what was going on but I knew this was not any kind of normal labor. And, indeed, Diva had been fine just moments before.

Diva repeated these acrobatics several times and I was panic stricken. I lured her to the barn (my sheep would WALK THROUGH FIRE for animal crackers!) where I gave her some NutriDrench (a vitamin/mineral/energy source supplement) and a bunch of animal crackers. Diva ate a bunch of 'cookies', nibbled on the molasses mineral tub that I give the girls the last couple of weeks of their pregnancies, and then wanted back outside. She seemed fine so I let her back out. She returned to grazing and would occasionally lay down and contentedly chew her cud. I of course, continued to be a basket case...

I posted to the Shetland Breeders List and dear Marry Ellen Kelly (aka: "Bo Peep") was kind enough to CALL me to offer whatever assistance & expertise she could, over the telephone. Mary Ellen has been breeding Shetlands for years and is the woman who first introduced me to the breed. She assured me that although Diva's behavior was not typical, it was within the range of normal for a first time mom. Mary Ellen felt that since Diva had responded so well to the NutriDrench and now appeared fine that it is probably case of Diva being a "Diva" and not liking the signals she's getting from her body...her lamb has dropped into position for birth. I felt much better after talking with Mary Ellen.

Last night Stephen called. Stephen is one of my very favorite Shetland people. He is kind and funny and generous and truly loves his sheep. Diva is the second lamb I have got from Stephen's farm "SHELTERING PINES" in Michigan. Stephen is like "the guru" of Spotted Shetlands in the Midwest. Mr. Guru assured me that Diva's behavior didn't even surprise him! He pointed out that her grand dam is "a screamer"!!! Oh GOOD! Just what I wanted to hear. I can't wait to see how Diva handles actual labor if this is how she deals with her lamb dropping into position for birth... Anyway, Stephen also assured me that I had treated the situation appropriately and wished me luck with the upcoming event...

I also got a wonderful e-mail and offer of support and advise from Bill Stearman, in Canada. Bill & I met, through Stephen and he owns a Bluff Country HST ewe: "Zha Zha Mikaela". Bill also offered his support, council and shoulder. Bill is owned by an incredible flock of exquisite Shetlands at "Willow Garden Shetlands" in Prince Edward County, Ontario. If you visit Bill's web site (which I HIGHLY recommend) please drop him a note and ask him to fix the link to MINE...... ;-)

The last time I looked out the window, Diva was laying by the big tree in the girls pasture. She never lays there.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Flash's babies!

My beautiful Flash Flood surprised me, with twins (a ram & a ewe) when I got home from work the day that Alice had her triplets. In honor of Flash's Great-Grand-Dam: "White Diamond" (who died earlier this spring), I'm calling the black/smirslet ram lamb "Black Diamond" ~ he has a white diamond on his forehead. I'm calling his exquisite sister "Lacy" (she looks like she's wearing a lace bonnet) and thinking of something along the line of "Diamonds & Lace", or something similar...She is an VERY beautiful ewe lamb with awesome fleece and striking, smirslet markings. A definite spot carrier.



I'll try to update pictures of all the babies tomorrow. That will be somewhat dependent on how my night goes. I'm thinking that Diva may be in early labor and I want to keep a close eye on her so I'll be setting my alarm and getting up to check on her...(waving DPNs, prayers & positive thoughts appreciated!!)

All's Well...

Sorry for the break. I was totally overwhelmed and just didn't have the time or energy to post. I'm afraid I don't handle lambing all that well...

Fortunately, my GIRLS handle it MUCH better than I! Now, where did I leave off? Oh, yes...Alice's triplets, early Thursday morning...Is this little guy cute, or WHAT? He's a dark moorit (brown) ram lamb. Alice always gives me more boys than girls but I don't mind a bit because they are always of such excellent quality that I have no trouble finding good homes for them. Both the boys are moorit. And there's a beautiful, musket (will end up "oatmeal", like her mom ewe lamb who has stolen my heart. I'm calling her "April". I don't know if that name will stick or not, but it's what I call her ~ and SHE COMES up to be petted! I want an Alice daughter (to keep) SO badly, but really, REALLY want her to be solid color ~ not Ag (genetically fading from black to grey or brown to musket). I don't know. I'll have to see what else I get for girls.

Things have wild around here. After going into work 2 hours late because of Alice & her triplets, when I got home from work, Thursday afternoon, I found FLASH FLOOD in the barn with new born TWINS! I'll post separately about them. BEAUTIFUL lambs! I want to keep the little girl (so what ELSE is new??????)

Thursday, April 20, 2006


I'm late for work! Details later.... ;-)

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

TWO beautiful boys!

At 7:30 tonight, KitKat delivered first one and then another moorit ram lamb. I can't say that I'm not a bit surprised (not really disappointed because at least she had two healthy, handsome lambs ~ but surprised, none-the-less) that Kit Kat has STILL not given me a Katmoget lamb. The Katmoget marking is supposed to be DOMINANT! Maybe next year. ;-) Mom & sons are doing wonderfully. And with Paco as their sire, these handsome ram lambs both carry a recessive for HST markings(as evidenced by the faint white spotting on their heads), so I'm more than happy with them. KitKat does not carry spots, so I know I'll never get a spotted lamb from her but I love the Katmoget marking and she has the most exquisite fleece AND her lambs will carry spots. The boys were bouncing around before I even got them all into a jug. Tomorrow I'll get a closer look and more pictures. I'm grateful to KitKat for letting me milk out a little colostrum to save for Phoebe's lamb/s when it/they arrive...

ON THE ALICE WATCH....My lovely lady is getting close. You can see how sunken she appears around her hip bones and tail head ~ indications that her lambs have dropped into lambing position. Could be any day now. I'm still surprised at how slowly lambing has started this year! Since I witnessed 4 ewes being bred on the day I put the breeding groups together, I expected a mad rush of lambs. NOT that I'm complaining! I'd much rather have it go slow and have a break between deliveries. I'm too old for this much stress........ ;-)

Cute pictures tomorrow. I'm going to bed!

KitKat's in Labor!!!

Just a quick "heads up!" to those of you watching for lamb sightings ;-) KitKat is either in early labor or doing her part to help with the energy crisis. She's been out back, digging, ever since I got home from work. No sign of actually straining yet (which means it could be a L-O-N-G night) but she's either in early labor or digging for oil. My bet's on labor. Alice doesn't appear to be terribly far behind. Either that or she has adapted the premise of "keep your friends close and your enemies closer" as she & Kit Kat are staying quite close to each other. Haven't seen Alice dig yet, so for the time being, I'm just a basket case about KitKat.....

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Better Pictures...

After spending last night and this morning in a "jug" (small pen) I decided that Zest and her beautiful babies would benefit from a little fresh air and sunshine. So, I moved them to the nursery barn/paddock and they spent the afternoon exploring and grazing.

This is a VERY striking ram lamb. I love his 'leggy' good looks and 'look at me' attitude!

And this little lady has captivated me! She has the tiniest, little tail, straightest, strongest rear end and curliest fleece... And she wags her tail, when I pet her, to boot!!! I've already started calling her: "Mia Bella" (My Beauty)


After a LONG day (I found Zest, in early labor, at 1:00 in the afternoon and she delivered these beauties at 7:30 last night!) Zest presented me with twins, sired by Bravo. An awesome HsT (only three white stockings so he gets a 'lower case S' ~ indicating an incomplete expression of the marking) ram lamb who weighed in at 7 pounds, 12 ounces! Quickly followed by his little sister: "Bluff Country La Mia Bella" ("my beauty"), 6 pounds, 6 ounces of absolutely gorgeous, black/smirslet ewe lamb with "obvious at birth" - outstanding conformation and beautiful fleece! What a doll. I'm even thinking about keeping her for myself!

I have to admit, I almost feel sorry for the people who have ram lambs reserved from my girls. It's going to be mighty hard to select and we've only got two so far!!! ;-) I took the day off work so will have more/better pictures this afternoon when I let Zest and her twins out into the nursery paddock...

Sunday, April 16, 2006

After the rain...

It rained all day here in the Bluff Country. That's OK, the grass is growing as fast as the lambs ;-) It finally stopped around 6 o'clock tonight and I went out and sat with my pregnant ladies. Here's my lovely ZARIA resting her head on my lap. My fingers are dirty from giving back rubs to my girls....


I don't know if you can see it or not, but Alice is WINKING in this picture! Did you know that if you click on a photo, you can see the full sized version? I think Alice has a few days yet. She always carries her lambs low but her udder is not engorged yet.
In the meantime, Savannah and Zerox/Kokomo ??? are thriving ~ HELP! I don't know what I want to call this ram lamb! Any suggestions?

And then, there's our beautiful "bottle baby" WHISPER. She is doing very well, under the watchful eye of her step-mom, Phoebe. Unfortunately, Phoebe wasn't thinking ahead when she stole Savannah's ewe lamb. Phoebe still hasn't lambed (she's getting close, I noticed last night that her babies are dropping) and her milk has not come in yet! Therefore, we have our very first bottle baby.

In spite of the artificial feeding method, Whisper is doing very well. I milked out Savannah, four times, on Friday, so Whisper was getting her dam's milk (and colostrum). I'm sure that Savannah fed her at the time she was born because Whisper's tummy was quite round when I found her.

Whisper continues to try to nurse from Phoebe, who stands like a loving mom...I think Phoebe's milk is beginning to come in because Whisper has not finished her bottle her last three feedings and her tummy is still nice and round. Of course, if Whisper gets all of Phoebe's colostrum, I'll be milking out my other ewes to provide colostrum for PHOEBE'S twins. I sure hope that Phoebe has learned her lesson and won't try taking anyone else's babies in the future!

My oldest daughter and her handsome husband and my 3 wonderful grandsons are coming out for Easter Day with Don & I. I'm so excited to have family around for the Holiday. Unfortunately, it's raining, so the Easter egg hunt will probably be in the house and garage.

I'm thinking KitKat will be the next to lamb...

Friday, April 14, 2006

Too tired for pictures...

I just realized: Savannah was NOT in Paco's breeding group. She was in Zorro's! So Zorro is the sire of our first HST ram-lamb of 2006! I can't believe how forgetful I'm becoming!!! As my dear friend, Kim, pointed out to me; there's no way that Savannah & Paco could have produced a black lamb... Duh! I know that.

That changes the name possibilities. Although I've given up on naming all of Zorro's offspring names that start with the letter "Z", I was saving a special name for Zorro's first HST ram lamb: "Zerox". "Bluff Country Zerox" What do you think? Like the copy machine. I know it's spelled wrong, but I ignore proper spelling. I've always wanted to name a Zorro son 'Zerox' but wanted him to be an HST and this is the first ram lamb that Zorro has sired with his markings.

I'm putting my weary bod to bed, before I FORGET!
Don's doing "nanny duty" while I work tomorrow....

OK, ONE picture:


Meet Savannah & Zorro's 12 hour old son (who I am refraining from naming ~ although I like "Kokomo" ~ pending his potential new owner's input). This is why I breed for HST markings. See how striking the white on the HEAD, SOCKS & TAIL is? This is the second year that Savannah & Zorro have given us an HST lamb (Zaria ~ bred to Paco, is the big sister!) I couldn't be happier.

Well, that's not quite true...

This is our handsome little guy's TWIN SISTER. Isn't she adorable? Sorry folks, I couldn't resist. Her name is "Bluff Country Whisper". She's one of our, typical, HST-carrying, solid color with a "whisper of white on their heads" lambs. ;-) unfortunately, it appears that Whisper was the first-born of Savannah's twins and that while Savannah was busy delivering number two, Phoebe decided that Whisper needed a more attentive mother! SO...Phoebe is raising Savannah's daughter. By the time I got out to the barn, both lambs were cleaned off and dry and had obviously nursed. They were also quite apparently bonded to their respective moms! I tried putting Whisper back with Savannah & Mr. HST, but she wanted by Phoebe ~ who was outside the barn, bellering her head off. Savannah didn't exactly reject Whisper ~ she was just more concerned and focused on her son. Whisper would not even try to nurse from Savannah. She just kept calling back to Phoebe. So, since I was supposed to be at work anyway ~ and it was obvious that both lambs had already nursed, I decided to reunite Phoebe and the ewe lamb she had stolen. Seemed like a good idea at the time...

more later...(by the way, I love my black "with a whisper of white on their head" lambs, and moorit lambs and EVERY color of lambs just as much ~ it's just that I like how striking looking the HST's are) ;-) Off to Farm & Fleet ~ more details later this afternoon.

Thursday, April 13, 2006


Details tomorrow (sorry but I'm EXHAUSTED!!)

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Really boring post...

I'm sorry. This is going to be a very boring post. I'm so tired I can't even think. I have managed to drag my weary body out to sit with my ewes the past two nights. That's about it! I wish my husband would take some pictures when I'm sitting out with the girls. They're so funny! They literally cuddle and snuggle. They kind of shove each other out of the way and crowd in, close to me, to get petted and scratched and rubbed. Last night I sat out there for a good hour and had two almost laying on my lap and four others standing around me nudging me to pet THEM. I need more hands! Even after I went into the house, the girls stayed in the backyard grazing. I went back out and sat in a lawn chair with my feet on the bench to the picnic table ~ now, you've got to try to picture this...I'm sitting in one of those reclining lawn chairs, in a mostly upright, but slightly back-leaning position...I've got my stubby little legs stretched out in front of me, using a bench from the picnic table as a footstool. I've got two sheep (Zest & Zanex) standing on the other side of the footstool/bench, and I'm rubbing their necks with my bare FEET. The bench kept them from coming up onto the stone patio I was sitting on so they stood in the grass and I scratched them with my toes. Talk about SPOILED sheep ;-)

The girls are getting bigger. This should be an exciting weekend....


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