Lambing is in full swing and going well so far despite a short lived staffing issue
As I write this month’s diary, I feel like I’m penning a “letter from the trenches.” I’m on the front line and right in the thick of the battle as we approach the halfway point of this year’s lambing time!
I’ve been happy with how things have gone so far, we’ve had a few disasters along the way, but on the whole, lambs have been strong and ewes are milking really well. I’ve found this year a tricky one to manage the feeding of our ewes. Most of them are very fit and I’ve been trying not to feed them too hard bringing on the inevitable prolapses, which (I hope it’s safe to say now!) we’ve not suffered too badly with. With lambing in full swing we usually take on some extra help, but unfortunately this year one of our lambing assistants let us down at the last minute. Short staffed, and with lambs everywhere I turned to Facebook to try and find some help and, within the hour, the vacancy had been filled!
The wonders of social media!
The Texels have all but finished lambing and we’ve been very pleased with the lambs. Our new stock tup “Glenway Ultimate” has produced some cracking lambs and I’m looking forward to seeing how they develop. We weigh them at birth as part of the Signet recording scheme which we joined last year. I found the process very interesting, monitoring lamb weights at 8 and 21weeks, with a muscle scan to see how much depth of muscle a lamb has. We had some really good figures last year and I’m hoping to build on those. EBV’s are a good selection aide alongside the traditional physical and visual inspection we all (should) make before buying breeding stock. We are always interested in using technology to improve what we do, and our breeding is no different.
Urea has been applied to our younger grassland to stimulate some early growth. It’s wonderful to see the response from the young leys when the temperature allows growth to really start. There are few better sights than the flush of green in early spring. We shut off 200 acres back in December ready for ewes and lambs. We’ve seen some good winter growth and there’s a healthy wedge of grass to get things rolling in spring.
I’d better get back to the front line as the onslaught of lambs continues.
Tin hat on… “Chaaarge!!”
Will Case farms 300ha (750 acres) in partnership with brother Simon and parents William and Margaret at Ulverston, Cumbria. Land is divided between Plumpton Cottage Farm, and Robbs Water Farm, near Burrow in Furness. They farm 1, 000 lowland ewes, 90 pedigree Texel ewes, 65 Salers suckler cows, fatten 150 bought-in store cattle and have 12, 000 free-range laying hens.