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Sheep diaries: Not so black & white

We had come to the conclusion that lambs would either be born all black or all white, and in an alternate sequence, as it turns out. (The last lot after black triplets Pinch, Punch and Munf were Bunny and Hop, both white, seen here on their first day, making the overall sequence - black triplets-white singleton-black triplets-white twins.) So next, we were due for black twins (+/- 1).

But, it turns out things are not so black and white after all. Well actually, they are black and white. What we got around 9pm on Sunday 16th September to one of the Floppy 3 was twins - one white and one black. I was alerted to the fact that we had some new arrivals by the distinctive noise that sheep mums make to their newborns. A kind of soft, stacatto baa, not unlike a purr, actually. The Floppy Three ('floppy' for their distinctively floppy ears) came from a block just outside Palmerston North and were born in the spring of 2017. We had heard stories that one-year-old ewes don't tend to make good mums, but that certainly has not turned out to be the case so far with these young ladies. In fact of all the mums, this one has turned out to be the most communicative, purring to her babies throughout the first few days of their lives.

With reference to that classic Michael Jackson song, we have called her lambs Mikey and Jay (not sure whether they are girls or boys yet, but names these days are pretty gender-ambiguous anyhow).

And while we are on the subject of names, Bunny and Hop were named for their resemblance to small rabbits, their ears long in proportion to their small bodies. They were born to the last of the Pohangina 3, who has also proved to be a great mum.

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