Lambing is off to a slow start, says James Read

Lambing has got off to a slow and painful start with a couple of prolapses and some premature triplets – the normal bad start you would expect. Typical sheep, I think they are waiting for some bad weather to come before they have a lambing blast.

With the glorious weather we have had, I think the ewes got a bit too fit, with the ewe lambs looking like elephants.

We have also been flat out spraying and fertiliser spreading. Rust has hit us with a vengeance down this east coast on a well-known wheat variety. We are now on the second pass of nitrogen on everything.

The other day I got the shock of my life when I was filling the spreader up. The old battery hens I had bought for my wife have been laying everywhere, including on the top of half-tonne bags of fertiliser. I slit the bag at the bottom and a chicken and half a dozen eggs came straight through and ended up in the spreader. I wondered what had happened.

Sally, my young bitch, got a win at a trial in Lancashire at the weekend and has secured her place at the English National with her mother Jess. The win was even sweeter as the master class himself was judging, Jim Cropper. Trialling over, it’s now back to the lambing.

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