This morning before work the first lambs of the season started to arrive but the birth is / was not without its complications.
Before work this morning the first lambs of the current lambing season started to emerge. When I left for work the sheep was in the process of giving birth so I hope by now it will have successfully managed it but it hasn't been a straight forward process so far....
During the morning check of the sheep, Howard noticed one of them had only the shoulders and head of a lamb emerging from the sheep's back end. The presentation of the lamb in this position is not the correct presentation when giving birth and consequently the lamb had got stuck in the passage. Without intervention, the lamb and most likely the sheep would have died and so it was essential that we assisted the sheep in its labour.
Sometimes under these circumstances it is possible to push the lamb back inside the mother and rearrange its position so that it can come out correctly (with feet coming first - see pics below) but in this case, the lamb was too far out to do so. The only option was to pull the lamb out by its shoulders which is incredibly painful for both mother, lamb and the farmer! Luckily Howard succeeded in getting the lamb out but it was barely alive.
The last thing I saw before leaving for work was the sheep and new born lamb being rushed up to the farm buildings in the back of a trailer for some medical attention. We hope the lamb will live but at time of writing I am not sure but will update this as and when I know!
UPDATE: Good news! The sheep sucessfully had 3 baby lambs which are now healthy and sound asleep inside (as it is dark and cold). If the weather is nice they will be allowed outside during the day. So it is a happy ending to a story that didn't look promising to start with.
The remainder of the lambing sheep will be coming up to the field in view tonight and we will be rotating the camera to view the whole field. We are hoping the lambwatchers will be able to keep us posted on any strange events / sheep looking in difficulty using the form on the homepage. Please use the "sightings", "comment", or "other" subject and we will be alerted immediately even if none of us are in the chat.