I let Nova and Little One out into the small area in front of the barn today. Nova ran over to the fence calling after the other sheep like she wanted out. Little One (who is a ram, I checked) had other priorities. Food occupies the top five spots on his priority list.
“Hey guys, where’d you go without me?!”
“Stop walking, it’s breakfast time!”
Mira smelled all the birthing smells yesterday and got all confused. She was pretty sure this lamb is her Real Baby, not that other one that made her hurt. Nova disagreed vehemently.
“I think that’s my baby!”
“Um, no, this is MY baby!”
They bickered through the fence for a minute or two, then Mira lost interest and wandered off to play Kill the Stick, which is her favorite solo game. I’m not sure what the goal of the game is, but you play it by moving a stick around with your hooves and occasionally jumping up and down, pounding it with both front feet.
“I’m going to get you, you stick!”
I once made the mistake of thinking that the stick was bothering her and tossed it over the fence to get it out of her way. She got very mad at me, stared at the stick through the fence mournfully for a minute, then ran off and found another stick to move around and stomp on. I think maybe she was around Watcher too much as a baby and picked up his stick obsession.
“Hey, it’s another little one! Where are they coming from?”
“Hold still, Mom! It’s still breakfast time!”
Once Mira and Nova stopped yelling at each other, Nina and Neo came over to see the baby, prompting Nova to hide him behind her even more pointedly.
“Hey wow, it’s another one!”
Then Holly, Duchess, and Lady came over and Nova got overwhelmed, bopped Holly in the head, and shuffled her lamb away from the fence back towards the barn.
“You’re making me nervous, following us around! You’re a baby-snatcher, don’t you dare snatch my baby!”
“Wait up Mama! Stop running away with my milk!”
Nova is extremely paranoid about losing track of her babies.
Little One is extremely paranoid about losing track of his food.
“Maybe we should just go back in the barn…”
“What about all those other sheep? I was busy having breakfast, I didn’t get to check them out! And the person with the clicking box, what about her?”
Nova was not in favor of her precious baby checking out all those potential baby-snatchers.
“Nope, that’s it, we’re going back in the barn.”
“OK. Can I have second breakfast now?”
I left the barn door open so Nova and Little One can go in and out as they please today. Then I left them alone and came back to the house so Nova could stop watching me suspiciously.
I knew from previous years that Nova wouldn’t be ready yet to have all her curious flockmates swarming around checking out her baby. That’s why I didn’t let her out with the others like she wanted at first. Nova’s neurotic enough about her babies, I’d rather do everything possible to limit the stress on her. If the others can meet the lamb a little bit through the fence today, there won’t be as much fuss when he and Nova go out with the others.
At least Mira seems to have finally forgiven me for trying to foist her own baby off on her. She’s back to following me around (as long as Angel isn’t there), climbing on me, and loudly demanding entrance to the basement.
“Moooom! I know you’re hiding crunchies in there!”
Maybe when Angel grows up they’ll both stand outside my door yelling like Christmas carolers.