Monday, May 18, 2009

Full Circle...

The very first HST Shetland in the Bluff Country was Sheepy Hollow Zorro ~ a ram lamb that I purchased in 2001 from Nancy & Jerome Larson, of Sheepy Hollow Shetlands, in Wisconsin. Yesterday, Zodiak (a Zorro daughter) wrapped up the 2009 lambing season with the birth of twin ram lambs. Nice, big, healthy boys!

There was a bit of a scare before the first lamb was born. Zodiak had gone into the barn where she'd been pawing and straining for some time. I left her be and checked on her every now and then. Finally, she passed her water bag and a few contractions later, a nose. JUST a nose. No toes.

Now, I'm a very competent shepherd when everything goes smoothly with my sheep. But I tend to FREAK OUT, question my abilities when something unexpected occurs. So, I called my neighbor. A "sheep lady" who lambs out hundreds of ewes a year. No answer. OK. Get my lambing supplies. Where are the plastic gloves??? I can't find my OB lubricant! I can't find the plastic gloves!!! I grab a bottle of antibacterial hand soap (to use as a cleanser AND a lubricant) and prepare to "go in" bare handed.

Fortunately, I only had to put my fingers in around the head to find a front foot. I gave a gentle tug and found the other. The big, black, ram lamb slid out easily. "Holy lambing, Batman! That was scary!" I named him Batman.

Zodiak set to work, cleaning up her son and I decided that, since it was a gloriously warm and sunny day, I'd rather she delivered the next lamb outside. I hate the mess of lambing in the barn! It was so much nicer for Zodiak to clean him up on the clean, fresh grass than in the dirty, mucky stall she'd just given birth in. OK ~ it's not really dirty but all that yuck sticks to the lamb and the ewe has to lick it all off!

The other ewes gathered around to welcome (through the fence) the new arrivals. I did slide Batman out from under Zodiak when she laid right on him as she was pushing his twin into this world. Wow! What a twin. Zodiak's second lamb is a black and white, HST with perfect markings! I'm going to name him after his Grandsire. Zorro.

I don't have to tell you how gorgeous Zorro is. Look for yourself:

He is literally minutes old in this picture!


I decided that since this could, quite possibly be the last year that I breed (unless I get my numbers WAY down), it would only be fitting to name Zodiak's son after the ram that started it all...


I am SO glad that lambing is over!

DREAM says...

"ME TOO"!!!


  1. Well done Zodiak! What handsome boys :o)
    How can you think of not lambing next year?! It is a bit stresfull, but look at the results! Would you just be selling fiber then? I can't remember whether you rear for meat or not. Then again, not lambing might be sensible... it's too hard deciding who to keep!

  2. Congratulations Nancy on a successful lambing season. You have such a beautiful crop of lambs this year -but of course I love all of your sheep.
    We should start lambing sometime in the next week, and I always find lambing very stressful - but you did a wonderful job.

  3. What cute lambs! I will let Grandfather Zorro know about his new namesake :-)

  4. what beauties. I just sit here in awe. Your photography is always great.

  5. Good job Nancy! Now wasn't that lambing season just a breeze? lol!

  6. Congratulations, Nancy. Love the new Zorro, and that picture of the ewes watching through the fence is really cute.

  7. Great pictures, wonderful sheep and your a superb midwife!

  8. You've got a blogging award! Go to my blog to see!

  9. What a beauty Zorro is! and Batman is a handsme boy, too! Well done, Zodiak!

  10. Congrats to you and the girls on the final 2009 lambs! WooHooo!
    You know you are going to have some next year, silly.

  11. You really do have the most beautiful lambs! I'm glad it is all over for this year and you can relax a little.

  12. Congratulations on finishing your lambing season Nancy! I think Bluff Country Zorro is a great name.

  13. Anonymous9:25 PM

    Hi Nancy,

    Very well done with the assisted birth, and congrats to both you and Zodiak on 2 beautiful boys! I think Bluff Country Zorro is a great name and also Bluff Country Batman!!!! - da da da daaa da da--Bat-MAN!


  14. I sometimes question your lamb-naming motivations, but I LOVE Batman! I've been walking around "nah nah nahnahing" too, all day!



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