The Lamb That Fell From the Sky


Last Friday I went out to talk with my sheep and spread some hay when I noticed the smallest lamb I have ever seen. She was standing alone, in a helpless hunched over position, still wet from birth. I have seen many sheep born the last few years but this was the first not being protected by its’ mother.
All our sheep have been born on pasture, cleaned by their mothers and they started nursing within minutes. That is one of the reasons we chose Gulf Coast Native Sheep. The main reason is the taste.
We did have an incident a few weeks ago when an older ewe could not let her milk down for a few hours and we decided to give a bottle to to a lamb, but she never an abandoned her baby and the baby kept trying to nurse.
Ringo, the donkey noticed the tiny, lonely lamb and went over to comfort it. I looked around and he had it in his mouth so I decided I needed to take it with me. It weighed in at 4.5 pounds, not half of what the last few lambs weighed, but walked fine, tried to nurse Mojo, the dog, much to his chagrin, and was real happy to get a bottle of milk.
Our friends at Blue Heron Farm said they might take it in because they were set up to bottle feed and we are not. A very kind gesture indeed, but something happened that afternoon that made it impossible to take them up on the offer. I got back from market on Saturday and started on chores, and everywhere I went that lamb was sure to follow. She tagged along, heeling like my dogs do not, lying down when I stop, and heading out again when I move on.
We have seven ewes who were too young to be bred in the fall and obviously one snuck out in the middle of the night (and we now know who you were) for a midnight rendezvous with a rambunctious ram. We never saw any blood nor a placenta, so I guess it was an easy delivery of a tiny lamb. Often the moms eat the placenta, but I doubt that a ewe that didn’t even have the instinct to stay with her baby would know that predator protection technique.
So now I have another chore for a few weeks. Lambs need to eat three of four times a day and one this small cannot miss a meal. I have to go to Houston today, so guess who is going to be in the dog crate in the truck.
So maybe she is an alien and we need to name as such or maybe she is just a miracle. We have been known to have those around here.

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