Lambing on the Farm 2023

Our cade lambs huddled together under a heat lamp on a bed of straw.

Our livestock team are busing working around the clock as lambing on the farm begins at Sacrewell Farm. We have welcomed eight new cade lambs to our flock who are busy taking up residence in our Hutton Barns.

The lambs are settling into their surroundings and adjusting to life at Sacrewell in Cambridgeshire. They will be visible to the public from 1st April when our Easter event also begins. You will be able to watch the livestock team bottle feeding the lambs at 10am and 2pm each day.

If you’d like to get hands on and bottle feed them for yourself, we have a VIP lambing experience just for you. There are still a few tickets available on selected dates throughout April, but please be quick to avoid disappointment as availability is limited.

As the magic of Spring begins at Sacrewell, we catch up with our Livestock Manager Noah for a quick Q&A on lambing on the farm.

Q. Do we have cade lambs and what are their names?

A. Yes, our cade lambs joined us at the end of March and have been named by myself, and the livestock team. They are called:

  • Greg
  • Tuck
  • Griffin
  • Pingu
  • Penny
  • Beatrix
  • Darcey
  • Parker

Q. What breed are the lambs?

A. The cade lambs are a mixture of breeds including commercial sheep and rare breeds. The lambs that are due to begin lambing on the farm are Boreray sheep, a rare breed animal on the RBST watchlist.

Q. Are we expecting more lambs this year?

A. Yes, we are expecting a couple of lambs from our current flock. These will be Boreray lambs due at the end of April.

Q. What month is lambing season?

A. Lambing season varies depending on where you are in the UK. The south of the UK tends to start earlier as the climate is milder. The south begins lambing from as early February until April. Whereas the Midlands and the east of the UK will begin lambing season at the end of February/early March until late April.

Q. When does lambing in Cambridgeshire usually begin?

A. Typically lambing in Cambridgeshire usually starts at the end of February/early March and goes on to late-April.

Q. How many times a day are our cade lambs fed?

A. For the first 3 weeks our cade lambs are fed 5 times a day – 6am, 10am, 2pm, 6pm and 10pm. As they get a little older, we will reduce the amount of bottle feeds but there will be a self-feeder for the cade lambs to use if they get hungry.

Q. What do the lambs eat?

A. Lambs predominantly have milk until they are 10 days old, then they can eat a mixture of milk, dry food and hay.

Q. What happens to the lambs once they get bigger?

A. Once our cade lambs have grown up, they will join the rest of the flock out in the field. The cade lambs are great for our educational and school visits as they are very friendly and enjoy being fed by people.

The lambs that will be offspring of our Boreray will stay out in the field with the rest of the flock.

Q. What are the first signs of sheep lambing?

A. The first signs of a sheep lambing are:

  • The teats of a ewe will begin swelling about 10 days before they are due to lamb. The teats will feel firm and be full of colostrum.
  • In the last hours before lambing many ewes will separate themselves from the flock.
  • Ewes often look in discomfort and start scratching at the ground.

Q. What is colostrum and why is it important?

A. Colostrum is the first milk that a ewe (and mammals) produce during pregnancy. Colostrum is essential for new-borns as it is highly concentrated, protein rich and full of antibodies. It helps new-borns fight infections and gives them the best start in life.

Q. And the all-important question, where can you see lambs at Sacrewell?

A. Our cade lambs will be visible to the public from 1st April, and you will be able to see them through the shutters in the Hutton Barn. There will be signage going up around the site to direct visitors.

Lambing on the farm has officially begun! Keep an eye on our social media for lamb updates!