It has been a long weekend. It is officially December now and I am still building fence on the property. The weather is amazing and scary. In all reality everything should be frozen and I should not be building any more fence for 2021. Since the weather is cooperating and we set a record high last week, I am going to continue to fence. Mr Tex & Mr Rainman came out on Friday and worked on H bracing the posts we already had in the ground. This was because it was below freezing and I wanted to give the ground some time to warm up before we started to attempt to drill more holes in the ground. I went to town to buy some more railroad ties, T posts, woven wire and two gates. I got the entire flat bed trailer loaded down with fencing materials. I made it home just after they finished the H braces and we unloaded the trailer. Mr Rainman and I finished the day by distributing all the fencing supplies along the length of the future fence. We calculated that at the current material prices it would cost about $10k/mile of fence. It has definitely gone up in price since prior to Covid.
The sheep are trying to have their babies. They are not being very fast at delivering. We only had five babies this week, four mommas delivered, one set of twins and the rest singles. Today made our production percentage jump as we had two sets of twins! I went out and rearranged the barn on Saturday with Mr Professional. We set up five pens on the far end of the barn and created a larger momma/baby area. I did mess up and leave the adjoining gate open and spent an extra thirty minutes sorting those sheep that had given birth from those that had not. I missed one last night and caught it this morning! Tip, shut all the gates all the time. We need to order three more long aluminum panels. This will let us form five pens with a pathway to the gate. The plan for next year is to just setup all five pens before lambing season and then they will be ready, including the one under the stairs this will give us six creche.
- 17 of 34 ewes have given birth, 50% completed
- Lambs born alive 27 birth rate 159%
- Stillborn lambs 0
- Lambs rejected 0
- Lambs died before 2 weeks 0
- Lambs bummered not rejected 0
- Flock productivity 159%
- Singles 8 of 17, 47%
- Twins 8 of 17, 47%
- Triplets 1 of 17, 6%
Mr Professional came out on Saturday, we did the barn rearrangement then went onto installing the gate automatic closer. This is for the gate leading into our yard from the cars. We read the instructions carefully and realized we needed to fabricate an extension piece. After digging around in the scrap metal file and then bending some metal, we attempted to install it in four different configurations with marginal success. The automatic closer kept stopping the gate from fully opening. Annmarie came home and suggested we install it on the door over by the trash can enclosure as the propane person always leaves it open. We did and it went right on without any difficulties. We gave up and went and installed the two metal gates on the front porch. They just need some type of stopper so the auto closer does not tweak the doors. We are working on finding something that will work then I can adjust the auto closer appropriately.
Mr Tex came out on Sunday and we focused on drilling holes in the ground. We now have all of the holes in the ground necessary to complete the fence! The only real problem is we still have six posts to set in gravel, which can be done after ground freezes, but we have NO T-posts installed yet. I need about 5-6 hours of thawed out ground to install the 110 T-posts necessary. Once the T-posts are installed then nothing can stop us, not even snow. We did have to move a fence that was under the power lines back away from the road about three feet at its narrowest point. It was just going to be too tight of a fit when hauling the trailer back and forth. The nice thing is there will be no culvert to cross so no worry about someone dumping the trailer off into the ditch. I do need to buy a new auger point and teeth for the post hole auger. It is getting pretty dull.