Thursday, 23 April 2009

Busy with lambs and linen..

What a busy couple of days its been here on the croft. Lambing is starting to draw to a close - the black Hebrideans are being a bit tardy and we hope there are still a few more lambs to come - difficult to tell since they won't stand still long enough to have a feel and see if there is anything there, and they are all such slim-Jims you can't always tell by looking.

On Tuesday morning a little black lamb arrived in my care - its mother is a cross gimmer and had a tough time giving birth as the lamb, whilst being Hebridean in almost every other aspect, definitely had a blackface sized head. Hebrideans rarely have problems lambing, as the rams are small and compact like the ewes, but for blackfaces, the rams are often quite a bit larger than the ewes and the resulting lambs can be a struggle to birth. The same also applies to cattle. Anyway, this little lamb, along with its mum had had a tough time and she decided that motherhood wasn't for her and without ado abandoned the lamb. My husband saw if from the window, on the other side of the hill about half a mile away and we kept an eye on it. When it became clear that the lamb was going to be very vulnerable to the crows and ravens, we decided to bring it in. So it spend Tuesday afternoon and night in the garden. On Wednesday I fed it in the morning and it was very unsettled - bleating and yelling its head off. Then its mum turned up! She stalked around the fence for a while till we opened the gate, when she headed in and took charge of the lamb. We put them in our special needs field and she has been taking care of it, feeding it, talking to it and doing everything a new mum should be. No word of her previous behaviour!

This was a very unusual thing to happen - neither my husband nor myself have ever seen it before. But, alls well that ends well. I'll try to get a picture of the happy couple when I'm out with the camera next.

Yesterday I had a nice surprise order for some white linen. So I thought I would add it to the blog - here it is being warped. I'm using 10 lea 1/8 bleached white and warping in bunches of 24. This is the warping creel with the ends in place...

And here is the warping mill with about 12 bunches wound on it.
Altogether it will need 27 bunches of 24 on, so there's a bit more work to do before its finished. The linen is going to be about 32" wide when its finished and I'm warping 100 yards.
Watch this space for more photos as the project progresses.

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