Normally rams are only put with ewes for breeding and as we do not have enough space to keep rams separate from the ewes we do not keep them and instead buy one in the fall and sell him in the spring (or sooner if we have a buyer).
We had a bit of a problem this year, first we bought a truck to pull the trailer but when we went to hook it up we found that the connector for the trailer lights was different. When we got to the auction we found it had been canceled (the owner of the auction market was in hospital).
So we phoned the guy we have gotten rams from in the past, and he said he had a nice one for us, but did warn us the ram was young, and small. We prefer rams with a bit of color or unusual markings and he did say this ram was well marked, being black and white. He is a Katahdin – Dorper cross. For those of you not familiar with these breeds, they are hair sheep, and will not grow a proper coat of wool but they do get thicker coats for winter.
At one time we quite enjoyed having rams with horns, the horns made good handles, but we found sometimes the lambs would get their heads stuck in the fences because of the horns so now we prefer the polled rams - those without horns.
He brought the ram over in the evening and it was already dark so I called the other sheep over so he wouldn't be alone roaming the pasture and calling for friends. It was a cloudy night so the animals did not even have the moon to see each other. With my flashlight I could make out the donkey, llama, and sheep, as they greeted each other. Assured that the new ram would not go crashing through fences in the dark, I went to bed.
The next morning I was happy to see they had all bonded well. Last years ram took a few days to fit in.
Already this guy has made a pal, as he was hanging close to one of the Katahdins. Later I noticed that Mrs Dark Brown Barbado was hanging around with those two and almost in a motherly way seemed to be watching over him. I assume the Katahdin ewe is in heat and that is why he is with her.
An interesting note is that it looks like 3 of our ewes are already pregnant, we figure this must have happened back in May or June, just before we sold the ram. Sheep are pregnant for 5 months, so I expect anytime soon we will have new lambs.
So it looks like it might be a busy winter, with some lambs born soon, and some born in March. I will keep you posted!