Wednesday 28 April 2010

Dysentery update

Well, they are still dying but there are live ones too. The twins are getting thinned out without a doubt and I am getting ready to keel the backs of the heads of some lambless sheep if necessary. Red keel on the back of the head is the traditional mark for a geld sheep, makes it easy when looking the hill, you know not to look for a lamb belonging her if she has a red head. That could well be my only option shortly rather than split good twins off the other cuts.

As for the vets? well I spoke to my contact who was going to get back in touch once she'd read her medicine bible to see if there was anything available on the market. To date I've heard nothing. However, I did mention to the shepherd that I was in touch with my vets and wanted some sound facts before I went and knocked on the big house door.

Now whether he took fright at the thought of me knocking on the big house door, especially as I'm not worldly renowned for thinking before opening my mouth, or whether the cogs had been turning anyhow but apparently the big house had contacted their vets to see what was available.

The result? Well, due to the fact it is no longer necessary to have a serum for new born lambs there isn't one available off the shelf. A fresh carcase could be sent to the laboratories and a serum could be produced from it apparently. I presume by that they must need to have the 'bug' in their hands to be able to produce something to innoculate the new born lambs with.

Anyhow, the conclusion is that by the time this happens, I am writing this on Saturday night (24th), Monday would be the earliest a lamb could be taken in and it would have to be fresh, so what if one didn't want to die on Monday? We both believe there wouldn't be a 24 hour turn around in getting the serum made, probably have to wait a week? By which time it is really too late as the vast majority of the lambs will be born by then.

Hugely frustrating scenario.

What will be will be, it is out of my hands, I am powerless to do anything about it. Fortunately not all the lambs are being affected. I don't quite know how lamb dysentry works but there must be an immunity with some of the lambs. There are more live ones than dead ones and lets hope that is how it goes. The other three cuts are showing no signs, due to the fact that they have all suffered from it in the past and are now innoculated..........

I am singing my own rendition of Queen's hit "Another one bites the dust". Nothing quite like a bit of gallows humour to help the situation along!!

Not to worry, next year all will be well !!!


Emma Anderson said...

It sounds as if you are having a wretched time of it. I hope matters improve soon. Best wishes.

Tarset Shepherd said...

Thanks for your kind words Emma, there will be many had a far worse lambing than this one and although I find it extremely infuriating due to the fact it was all preventable their are many pluses to out weigh the negatives. Life is what you make of it and a warped sense of humour goes a long way to getting you through. I am now finding the circumstances 'interesting' and feeling almost honoured to be witnessing a 'disease' that I've only heard of and that many in my working life won't have experienced. Apologies if my wingeings have given any cause for concern. Will catch up with your postings when I get home and get back onto broadband. Regards