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A young ram lamb takes shelter with its mother.

After weeks of expecting a lamb at any moment, the season has begun with five dropping at once! Fathered by the late, great Damara x Dorper ram Pecorino (sheepish in all but his appetites, he came to an untimely end after over-doing it on lupins), these little crossbreeds have a distinct Damara bearing and appearance, with their floppy ears and dappled coats. While the alpacas typically have an adolescent aloofness, now that there are lambs about they’ve switched into vigilant mode, keeping a close eye on their young charges and leading the flock to water and fresh pasture.

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After starting the flock with Wiltshire Horns, we found that this breed didn’t exactly relish our pre-treed (ie. open, windswept and exposed) environs, so we’ve started breeding the flock towards hardier, less selective grazers like the Dorper and Damara that also offer a yield in meat and hides. So with last year’s lambs being Wiltshire Horn x Dorper, these are all of the above, but mostly Dorper. As with virtually every aspect of this farming project, it’s an experiment!

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