The lack of posts over the last couple of months has been down to tupping. Tupping is a strange time of year, you’re kept busy checking on the ewes, giving doses and making sure the rams are doing their jobs but apart from this daily routine, there’s very little going on worth writing about. With that in mind, I felt it was best to store all the updates in the back of my mind and write a post at the end of the process.
We’ve been running two tups, A Texel who’s been running with the Scotch Mule gimmers and a Lleyn who has had my Lleyn ewes and this year’s ewe lambs to see to.
The two batches of ewes and their corresponding tups were brought in on Friday for a dose of Flukiver, which helps to prevent Liver Fluke, and the tups were then drafted out, bringing an end to tupping for this year.
Luckily, there were plenty of brightly coloured bums! The tups were marked with raddle (a mixture of oil and paint powder) which is smeared on the tup, so that he leaves a mark behind when he mounts the ewe.
This, in theory, gives an indication of when the ewes have been served and are in lamb. We’ll now scan the ewes in the new year to check that they are in lamb and to find out how many lambs they are carrying, enabling us to split them in to management groups to ensure they receive the right amount of extra feed in the run up to lambing.
Last year we bought our ewes in lamb, so this is the first year we’ve had control over the whole process. It’s exciting but I’m in for a long, nervous wait until lambing begins in the middle of February to see if I’ve made good decisions.