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April (Year 1)

April is the month in which most of our fell sheep are born. They are born inside one of the farm buildings or in a lambing field near to the farm. The farmer arranges for the sheep to be born in or near the farm so that he can keep an eye on them and take care of them if anything goes wrong. The farmer sometimes helps a sheep deliver its lambs. Indeed it is not unewesual for the farmer's wife to help deliver lambs. Imagine the family sitting around a large table in the kitchen enjoying a home-cooked meal. After the main course the farmer's wife disappears for a few minutes before reappearing to serve the sweet. Can you believe that she will have gone to the lambing shed next door and delivered twins? This really does happen on the farm in April and it really isn't unewesual in a farming community. Your sheep may very well have been delivered between the cottage pie and the bread and butter pudding!

The lambs are tagged shortly after birth. Each tag contains a unique number. It is this number that enables the farmer and the authorities to track what happens to a sheep during its lifetime. This number also allows the authorities to check on the movement of the sheep at difficult times such as during a foot and mouth crisis.

During the early stages of their life sheep are kept in the 'inside ground'. This is the term used by farmers to describe the lower fields near the farm. This is where the young lambs can be seen skipping together in groups, one of the most endearing images of spring.