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Marie Prebble: 'I still await an outcome on losses from the dog attack'

February has been an unusually busy month, as I have been shearing or dagging every day. I have had plenty of work dagging other flocks and had some days shearing at a local abattoir.

I was recently a bridesmaid for my friend and tripping over my long dress during the ceilidh and falling onto my wrist was not the most ideal circumstance with all the shearing I have had.

 

I sheared some of my own just after scanning so they are inside having hay at the moment, but I will introduce concentrate to the multiples soon. The older Romneys scanned at 158 per cent, but the tegs overall were 128 per cent, with many being singles.

 

I find it harder to feed single tegs, as they still need some improving in the run-up to lambing, but I do not wish for over-big lambs out of them.

 

The older singles are easier because they need very little at all and are out on our banks with a bit of hay to keep them going.

 

A week of sunshine allowed me to open the shed doors so the shorn sheep could enjoy an extra week outside. Unfortunately, from the group I pulled from the dog attack, we had five singles and two twins reabsorb their lambs as could be seen at scanning.

 

I am still waiting to hear if NFU Mutual is going to do the right thing and pay out for these losses, as it is apparently not expressly within their livestock worrying cover.


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We are still waiting for DNA results from the swabs taken from the dog suspected of carrying out the attack, which was at the beginning of January.

 

I have sold some lambs to a local butcher who wanted pasture-fed animals only and has paid good money for them.

 

I have another 40 ready to sell and I think they will take my remaining draft ewes too.

 

It was great fun to let the cows and the month-old calf out of the shed.

 

Such a vast volume of bovine running down the slope in front of me, cows kicking their heels and throwing their heads around definitely gave me huge respect for them.

 

They will be coming back in for their new herd TB test next month. I am fortunately able to borrow a crush from the farmers we bought the cows from who are local to me.

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