Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Lady in waiting

This is Annaliese. Her mother was the late Annabelle the beautiful silver grey sheep. Annaliese has met and spent some quality time with the black fleeced Wilberforce. We have high hopes for a coloured lamb from her and the odds are better than good that she will have one - genetically speaking. Luck will play it's part though. Perhaps we should run a book and take bets on whether or not her lamb will be white or if coloured and if so what colour?
Sometimes, in a certain light, or when her fleece is arranged in a flattering manner (which usually means stuck down by rain or spiky after she has a good shake) she doesn't look pregnant. She looks trim and neat, but not pregnant. Sometimes she looks very, very pregnant. This is usually when she's trying to get up from a sitting postion. I wish it was easier to tell, but it's still an agonisingly long six weeks or more to go before we will know for certain. Ultrasounds are expensive and as this is not an economically important flock we don't do them. Usually it becomes obvious eventually, in the final week or so. Even then ewes have been known to surprise us by acting normal until the last minute when they turn up with a couple of lambs and a suddenly full udder. We do check them every day but they probably think it's funny to keep us guessing.