It was a very early start for me this morning and I swapped my duvet for coveralls my eyes may have been tired but my goodness it was worth it!
I arrived at the park just after 7am it was still dark outside but you could hear the park had already started to wake out with the sounds of the chickens and ducks flying back to their pond.
Martha greeted me and one other family at the gates and we headed across the park and down to the animal barn.
After slipping on some Avon Valley coveralls our first task was to make up the morning milk for the orphan lambs. Martha talked us through how to make up a bottle and the reasons why some of the lambs had bottles plus what sort of nutrients are in the milk and the importance of feeding. Each of us had a go at making the formula and pouring the mix into the bottles. Once completed we grabbed a few bottles each and headed to the animal barn which at the moment is being used as a maternity ward for the ewes.
Martha explained what we would be doing plus a few rules about how to probably give the lambs a bottle etc before we entered. We all climbed into the orphan pen where several lambs were eagerly waiting for their breakfast.. we each had two bottles each meaning we all got the chance to feed two lambs. Serious cuteness overload they are all so gorgeous! My favourite had to be Dobby… if you’ve been to the park she’s the one with no fur on her face due to milk splashes before she arrived at the park – I have a little soft spot for her.
Next we went to see the new mums and new borns some had been born the morning before and others the day before that. They were just the smallest most adorable little lambs! Our task for the new borns was to help spray paint the numbers onto the coats… this helps identify who belongs to who plus if they are a girl (purple) or a boy (orange) I thought my attempt a spraying a number 4 was pretty good for a first try!
Once that was done and I had finished aww’ing over the new borns we gathered the food bowls and washed them out before weighing out their food and dishing it out the the new mums and mums to be. We also headed to the fields to give some other sheep their breakfast.
After breakfast was served to everyone we had some photo opportunities… each of us got to picked a lamb to be pictured with. I chose Dobby who played right up for the camera and moved every time I camera was out but cuddled me every time it was away! But we got there in the end!
Unfortunately none of the expectant ewes gave birth whilst we were there but that was ok with me as its impossible to predict when they will go into labour.
After a busy few hours being a Shepherd and helping with tasks it was time for our breakfast. Bacon bap and a cup of tea was definitely well earned and needed (if you come in the evening you will get soup and a roll instead)
The whole experience was amazing, every morning should start with lamb cuddles. The only suggestion I would have for next year is to lowers the prices slightly as £45 was a little on the high side but if you love animals its totally worth it and you do get breakfast or dinner included aswell as a photo and park entry.
Anyone interested in booking this experience, please follow this link