09/01/2010 - The Livestock in the Snow

I thought some of you might be interested to hear how the animals are faring in this weather.... and to let you know that I plan to sell lamb and pork toward the end of Jan, Pork 23rd and Lamb 30th, but I''ll confirm this nearer the time.

Rudy the ram

The ewes, who are at Hamsey, were scanned on Monday 4th Jan and they are all in lamb, but of course a lot can happen between now and lambing, but it proves Rudy the Shetland ram and Harry the Southdown ram have performed ok! In fact old Harry was probably a month quicker off the mark than I had planned and 2 of the ewes are likely to lamb in the next 3 weeks!

Harry the ram

We have frantically penned them a space to go inside in case it is during the snow.. Well, the rest of the ewes are fine, just munching through lots of hay and needing the ice removed from the water.

Also last years lambs who are at Albourne, on my mother's land are doing ok.


Are you going out?

The weaners and gilt who are at Hamsey are not keen to come out of their arks in this weather, and have not even been particularly interested in coming out for food, preferring to stay and be fed indoors!

Mrs Pig and Griselda

Meanwhile our sow, Mrs Pig, hasn't been getting 'in pig' by A.I. (artificial insemination) not sure if this is down to my technique! or her dates, because she came into 'hogging' (when she is ready to accept the semen or the boar) on Saturday or Sunday which meant I order the semen on a weekday, Monday, and because she is only 'hogging' for about 2/3 days,she had come off by the time that Royal Mail delivered it at lunch time on Tuesday! So we booked a date, just before Christmas for her to visit the boar at Framfield and we duly got her there, through the ice and snow. The Boar was very quick off the mark! although Mrs Pig was fairly co-operative she did seem more interested in investigating her new surroundings, so I keep my fingers crossed that the boar had a hit and that she could be 'farrowing' (giving birth to piglets) in April.


Finally, the hens are spending their days hardly venturing out of their coop.