So after all of the cold weather last week we are now left with the sludge. The snow has melted on to already very wet ground and as a result we have very muddy pastures. The worst offender is the right hand side field at the back of the farm. Our Leicester Longwool sheep where residing in there but today we decided enough was enough. Their paddock was way too sludgy for them to be happy and they where starting to get issues with their feet getting clogged up with the muck. Our Herdwick sheep who live in the paddock opposite and in the big front field where still doing quite well. Their field has a steep slope so most of the water had run off.

It was decided then, The Leicesters need to move but we couldn’t put them out with the Herdwick ram (who looks suspiciously like a white lion) It was time to do some sheep jiggling!

1st of all we need to bring in the Herdwicks so we could separate off the ram ‘Hagrid’ and his little wether friend ‘Claude’. We also needed to trim Claude’s Horn, so 2 birds one stone.

Stage 1 was very successful and smooth sailing Stage 2 however involved Leicesters who can be a little less obliging.

 

So we let the Herdwick ewes back out into their relatively dry pasture and we ran Hagrid and Claude round to a small paddock next to the Manx and Castlemilk ewes. Hagrid resumes his strutting around like a lion, Manx and Castlemilk look on confused, and biscuit the Horse thinks we have put a pig next to her (she doesn’t like pigs) and bolts!

Next up move the Leicesters, but we also want to pull the 4 lambs out of the flock before we put the Leicester ewes out in the front field.

We all start to round them up but true to form they totally confuse themselves and think they are going out with the cows and head to the gate at the top of the field and then won’t budge. We manage to corral them into one group and they all start to trudge through the mud towards the bottom gate but wait… the lambs for no apparent reason panic and bolt in a different direction to the rest of the flock so we now have half the flock in and half out. Ten minutes later we manage to catch the last of the lambs just by the fence so we scoop her up and pop her over to the rest of the flock the final ewe that has left her brain somewhere else today finally realises that the gate is open and struts through casually.

Meanwhile we all have sticky gluey mud up to our ankles and feel like we have put on 20kg just around our boots.

Eventually we separate off the 4 lambs to go out in a separate field and we release the Leicesters to go in with the Herdwicks.

 

Needless to say the Leicesters heads go straight down and they start grazing happy to have drier feet. The Herdwicks however look extremely unamused by the whole affair.

Now the two flocks are settling in together and the Leicester are very happy with their new home. They will probably remain in this field form the next couple of months while the muddy pastures rest and then we can move them back up ready for lambing!