Ahhhhh. It’s such a nice feeling when a plan works out. This one is especially sweet after two years of fumbles with the ram harness.
Mango, my four-year-old Romney/Corriedale/Lincoln mutt ewe, was obviously bred by Cadbury in the last twenty-four hours. Her due date is February 13.
Of course, having a definite due date is still only an approximation. I had a due date for Katika’s most recent calving and she ran more than a week late, giving me many sleepless nights. With my own first pregnancy, a doctor examined me and proclaimed I had a fortnight to go — only to have Jon arrive the next day.
Meanwhile, I have no idea how many ewes Cadbury may have bred in the ten days after he wriggled out of his harness September 10 and before I wrestled him back into it. I saw him repeatedly cover one of ewes on the 17th. It was one of my cross-bred Cluns — which narrows it down to Bean, Smoky, Madeleine, Briar, or Chai. I think from the height and build it was Bean or Smoky, but I was too far away to be sure.
So it’s all vague, but from the dates it appears I might have lambs any time after February 1, and someone should lamb around February 9. Perhaps it will become clearer as time goes on and more rumps sport crayon marks, allowing for elimination and better guesswork.
Despite all the uncertainty, I was very pleased to see the bright red mark on Mango’s rump. It’s comforting to have any sort of mental buoy to look for when you’re adrift on the tossing seas of lambing season.