Some sheep chores are hard on the body, and some are hard on the heart. Not wanting to have surprise lambs in January, we moved our young ram lamb, Jolt, with a wether buddy, Rowdy, out of the ewes' area into the lambing shed area. Hopefully, Jolt will be finding a good home, with someone who wants a gorgeous, lilac ram. For now, he is old enough to need to be away from temptation. Both lambs were easy to move, spent their first half hour in the new area thinking they were at summer camp with a private buffet, and then realized what had happened.
It broke my heart to see their forlorn faces and not be able to explain to them why we were doing this.
The moms, too, took awhile to notice their babies were gone, but then began to express concern. Ayita, Jolt's mom, looked to me for an explanation.
Ariel began to hear Rowdy's desperate cries,
went into the shed to call him home,
and expressed her grief to the others for the rest of the afternoon.
They will all be fine in a day or two, but my motherly empathy kicks in during this time each year.