Just minutes old, a lamb finds its first meal in front of the Bridger Mountains at Willow Spring Ranch.
Some of you may remember this post about the Maremma sheep guard dogs at Willow Spring Ranch north of Bozeman. My friend Al Kesselheim were invited back up to the ranch recently to witness their annual lambing. Here’s what we saw:
Katy Harjes bottle-feeds an orphan lamb.
Richard Harjes gives a molasses and mineral mix to a newborn lamb, under the watchful eye of the newborn's mother.
The nursery is a portion of the lambing barn dedicated to solidifying the connections between lambs and their mothers. After 24-36 hours, the pairs are ready for the pasture.
There are about 10 dogs in various roles at the ranch. Richard Harjes puts one of his border collies, Fat Boy, to herding a group of rams.
Maremma sheep dogs like Titus work through the night guarding their flocks. Daytime is a little more relaxed — especially when Katy or Richard come to inspect the health of the sheep.
Richard takes a good look at one of his rams. The Harjeses keep a select group of rams for breeding.