Thursday, October 23, 2014

Sorry its been so long

Hi sorry it has taken  just over 9 months to blogg again but life in wisconsin can be very in tense when you have live animals to care for.

/The winter was very hard and one of the goat kids didn't live, even though he fought very hard. 

The lambing was easier but we only lamb the romneys as we wanted to try a fall lambing plan, this is to help us get lamb for meat ready all year round.
I now some of you don't like the idea of cute little lambs going for slaughter and may I take this oppertite to say  I DONT EAT  suckling pig or veal or baby lamb or baby anything, so I am not about to send in baby  lambs for slaughter. All our lambs are at least 9mth old as they have to hit 120  in weight before they are ready to go ( not so cute as the guys in the pics below).

Going back to spring, our lambing was small, some of our romney didnt lamb and our lamb crop was meager. but we did need to do some culling on our last years ewe lamb crop and this will hopefull see us through.

We are doing alot of emprovements to the property especially for the fall lambers and I have some pics of Davids work, later on

I am now going to jump to the present so you can see our fall lambs and goats

This is Bt and her lamb Twiggy and Dakota and her son
This is Twiggy(so called be Dave as she has the longest legs we have ever seen on a lamb) Twiggy if you didn't know was British model in the 80's.

Goat kids
Jollie had triplet two boy and a girl all white like she is, the girl is not named yet!!
Peaches had twins and boy and a girl the girl is the black and white is the girl Amarlier and Kaylib the boy( so call by my great nice) is the little face just over peaches back

Midnight had tripets 3 boys ( they as so cute I wish they where girls)

Daves new shelter for the fall girls and the weathered goats and Mr billy goat grough. He still has away to go but I am sure he will get it done.
As you can see Copper needed to get in the photo

This is the other angle showing some of the sheltered paddock that the ewes and lambs will have and the back of Giz, you had one dog you had to have the other.

I am agoing to try to keep the blogg up. I do some times feel I am writing to thin air so if you read this and enjoy I would apprieciate so comments now and again

thank you for reading the life of Yorkshire Rose Farm

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Chilly Babies

Happy new year.
Our new year has us trying to keep our baby goats from freezing.
Our first two where born on the coldest day of the year 6th January when the temprature reach -25C with a wind chill that sent it way down to -45C.
Emily decided that it was time to give birth to twin boys. one white one back and white.
The pic is of the white one have a warm, his back legs where frozen so we brought him to the house and layed him on towels with a hot water bottle under him and a hot
bean hag over his legs.
His to nurses(Giz and Copper) watched over him for the 4 hours he was in the house. Giving me the opportunate to do other jobs. As soon as he started moving around the dogs wimpered and I went to see what was going on.
Emily happily received him back lettimg him nurse straight away.
His brother came next.
Black and white and a little smaller than his brother he came in around 7pm. He got the same hot water bottle and heat bag and put in the bathroom as it is the warmest room in the house. I was hoping I had enough milk to see him through the night but at 2am he drank all the milk I had snd carried on crying so Dave got dressed and took him back to mum.
This up set Copper who cryed and howled for his new friend to come back, by 3 am I had him in bed carlming him down so we could all get some sleep.
Next to come was another boy (pic lower down). This was Emilys Mum Peaches, she started in labour while we where feed up on Tuesday morning. So she was moved in with Emily and another heat lamp was added to the pen.
At 9.30 I went to see if Peaches was ok and couldn't find her baby. He had crawled under the milking stand, I pulled him out and put him under the heat lamp, but I could still hear a baby crying and it wasn't coming from the 3 here.
On looking in another pen Baby had given birth to a little girl, she is black as Baby is white.
I was out of heat lamps, but Baby and her Mum Jolie looked like theywhere doing a good job of  cleanig the baby so I went off to buy another heat lamp for the night.
 Wednesday 8th January, its getting warner thank goodness and I have another set of twins born, these two little ones are silver gray, shame they are boys Dave said, such a pretty color.

Peaches and Emily family will have to manage with one heat lamp as these two little fellows need heat, still damp we left them warm under heat. I have just returned from the barn checking to make sure they are ok.
So these guy are about 4 hours old and still on wobble legs.
This is Peaches boy, now just over 24 hrs old.

He is a cute little guy with his skunk marking on his head.

This is Emily and her two, on their feet and nursing happily
They are 3 days old and showing no signs of harm from their frozen legs.
I thought you might like an update on the SAMM's the two lambs where born on the 13th and 14th November as you can see they are getting big and copping well with the extreme cold.
The can get in the barn and we did shut them in all day on Monday when it was so cold, but they have no heat they are well insulated with a warm wool coat.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Everything New

First I must apologise for being so long between blogs, but hay isn't it wonderful to catch up with what we have been doing.
August (yes it was July when I last blogged and you saw our 5 new arrivals for Dakota and the lose of my Sam (beagle dog). Well August was a busy month getting ready for the Wisconsin Sheep and Wool Festival  in September and I think I spent most of that month getting fleece ready for the show and working at my carder getting roving ready.pic of Custer the Ram lamb we bought hanging out with some of our boys enjoying the summer grass. Picture of Custer hang out with friends
 The Festival was great and thank you to every one that came to our stall, we appreciate your business and we value your comments on all of our products as it gives us a better understanding of what you our customers are looking for, always remember that custom colors are available with the dyed wool, roving or yarn.
 Just before the Festival a friend ask if we would be able to take her cashmere goats as she needed to re home them and it was one of the areas we where looking to go as we wanted goats milk so I could make goats cheese ( unfortunately with the licencing laws it is for our use only). But the fiber is not and we will have cashmere fiber available in the Spring of 2014.

 Jolie on the milking stand that Dave built.
 Some of the other goats the little one is Ben the new Billy/Buck we bought him from an unrelated flock just after we got the 14, the one in the top left is Gruff he is the main Billy /Buck that came with the flock.
 This is Polar a white neutered male and you can see his Cashmere coming up in his coat as he has curls.( goat hair is normally straight and stiff ish
 October the 14th we got our 50 day old chicks this photo is of them at about 6 weeks old they are getting their feathers, they are going thought the ugly ducking stage,
 New yarn I now have enough white Romney Rambouillet crosss sheep to make a batch of yarn and I got it back from Blackberry Ridge Mill late October , its a lovely Sports weight yarn soft and great for anything from scarves to sweaters. Is a small batch and I think it will go fast,


Its taken a while to get over Sam but last Friday 8th November, this little guy came to find his new home at Yorkshire Rose Farm
He is a beagle, his name is Copper and he is about 18 mth old, he is not too sure of the sheep and goats but I am sure he will make good friends with most of the residents of the farm and have lots of adventures with the not so welcome residents

As you can see Giz snd  Copper are all ready friends.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Its a long way form South Dakota

We would like to introduce you to our newest arrivals to Yorkshire Rose Farm
Gwen, Heather, Laura, Dakota and lastly Custer (Ram Lamb).

Last week we set off to South Dakota, we left after our Sunday Farmers Market, the farm we went to to buy our SAMM's (South African Meat Merinos) is just above Rapid City. We got to the farm just after lunch on Monday and was met by a very friendly family. 
Gwen and her son and Daughter in law, showed us round there farm and then it was down to business picking out our ram lamb, this was very tough as they had quite a few as they have 400 breeding ewe so that provided us with quite a few choices.
This done we headed for our motel and 2 days sight seeing before heading back to the farm Thursday to head home.
The journey home was long we left the farm around 10 am Thursday and drove stopping for fuel, and checking the water buckets for the sheep, they settled down in the trailer and munched away on a bail of hay. I think they found it easier than we did. We pulled in our drive at 2am Friday, exhausted, with one last check of the sheep we headed for bed.

Later we separated out 6 of our ram lambs to put with Custer and put the four ewes a a small paddock, we need to quarantine the for 3 to 4 week just in case they have an illness that could endanger our flock. They are all settling in quite nicely and getting a little more friendly towards us.

(above) The for girls

 (above) Gwen and Dakota

\Custer with some of our Ram Lambs, he is the white one in the middle of the two colored, with a Tunis cross bring up the rear. Custer is not keen on his photo being taken and always walks away.

 We are hoping these girls are pregnant and will give us lambs in late fall, so hopefully you will be seeing them again quite soon

Wednesday, July 10, 2013


Sam is the beagle sat down in the picture above.

Last night Dave and I decided it would be nice to have a night out and go to the movies. We got back around 9.30pm to to happy dogs wagging their tails in greetings. Dave went straight out to lock up the chicken coops and I made sure that both dog went out with him for their nightly duties.
Dave came back with only Giz, Sam was nowhere to be seen or heard, we called and called, we started to hunt for him and my worst fear began to come true. Sam has seizures and my biggest fear was he would go out and have a seizure and I could not find him in time, or I would be out shopping or something. Well it happened we found Sam and he was dead in the middle of some pine trees between the house and the barn.

So now my little fellow is chasing chipmunks in heaven I hope! and has left me with a whole in my heart as big as a barn door, my faithful, loving Sam was put to rest next to his old friend Blu.
 Dave, Giz, Sput and I will miss you.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Its all about the cheese

Yes I have been doing what Wisconsin is good at, making cheese.

One of our girls decided that she really didn't want her baby, one of the other girls had just lost her baby and was happy to help out, but that left the first one with milk and no drinkers so we decided that we would make cheese.

We both like feta and feta is often made from ewe milk so that is where I would start, well the start is milking and gathering a gallon of milk. Which didn't go down so well with the ewe ( her name is Git).

 Having gathered a gallon of milk and reserched the internet for rennet etc, I set about making feta

The next day I had my ball of feta cheese ready for cuting and salting.

After salting, it is put in to a whey bath and is left in the fridge, as it matures it gets crumbler and a little stronger. We have already eaten some of it and it is delicious and a second batch was made.

I have also had a go at making a hard cheese, this took 2gallons of milk and will be about 4mth before we know if I was successful.

This is my home made press as hard cheese needs the whey squeezing out of it, so from this batch of hard cheese I was able to may a small amount of recotta cheese yum.

Now having produced 4 gallons of milk/cheese my ewe is coming at milking time and is alot happier to stand and be milked ( treats help) and the milk is now being used on my weaker quad lamb as she needs building up alittle.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

What a clever girl

Saturday mornings are always busy as Dave has to help feed the sheep and then get off to the Farmers Market, while I stay and be midwife.
As Dave was putting hay in the hay rakes I was making the rounds checking that everyone was ok, but when I came across Twinie I say two little hooves that where most definately the wrong way round for a normal birth.
I shouted for Dave and got to work straight away and the lamb came out (breach) before Dave got to us, alive and coughing. As Twinie was so big and has had to have a helping hand to get up in a morning I knew that one lamb was out of the question, carefully I felt for another lamb, oh no front leg is down, I slowly moved the lamb so both legs where correct and that was twin boys. But I had felt more than 4 feet in there so another feel round and the third arrived, breach again.
That is it I said to Dave lets help her dry these little guys and get to the market, all the time watching Cappo making a nest in the corner of the barn, I will be back to check on you I said to her as I finished up the chores.
Two hours later Cappo had triplets and needed no help from me apart from a little drying, I then went to do a second check on Twinie to make sure she had all three under control and they where all feeding and to my suprise she had given birth to a fourth lamb, a girl, tiny, wet but alive. It has been touch and go with the girl and she needs help at feeding time as the two big boys clam the milk but the other two are now doing well.

Twinie having a rest
Cappo looking after the four triplets and one of her own, unfortunately one of Cappo's died in the night, the first 24hrs of life are always critical and some lambs just forget to breathe just like some babys.
Lambs at play