April Snow

The lambing gathers pace, on cue the snow comes just when we need it least this was yesterday mid-day.

This Morning

Ten minutes later at mid-day to-day! The Ewes are on the hill which means three walks around them each day, if the lamb enters the world in this snow and cold its chances of survival are much reduced.


One minute beautiful, the next Grim. Such is the unpredictable weather in April.

The View From Around Big Harbour AM This Morning (Tuesday)
Blizzard Conditions

I read this morning (Tuesday) online that the finger was getting pointed at Global Warming for our unpredictable weather just now. I get very tired when I read this sort of nonsense, a wee bit of snow in April and it is all doom and gloom.

In 1967ish whilst living on Mull we were camping in April at Drumfin with the Mull Scouts and Cubs. Lots of fun after a very warm spring day and the campfire. Off to bed to waken on the Sunday to a foot of snow, what fun getting towed by the Scout Leader, local electrician Roger Felter back to Tobermory as the ‘Emergency’ evacuation situation unfolded. Someone was despatched to collect our sledges first and a long line of them was strung out behind the car, with a cub on each. One by one as the speed increased we were thrown off into the ditch. The road was packed shiny snow sunny warm but crisp cold. I think I was one of the last to pile into Roger’s Vauxhall after rolling about the road. The last ‘cub’ enjoying the exhaust fumes all the way home.

Sorry to-day is not Global Warming (in my humble opinion).

Where’s the Grass

So just as the light was coming the snow started to fall heavy again making it very dark.

Out to the Cliffs

Really heavy going in thirty knots of wind and hail, fortunately no lambs. We are missing a couple of sheep all of a sudden so I have to check every nook and cranny for them, I wish we had some decent fields but good ground on Rona is not plentiful.

Lambing Platform

This was the same spot a day before, a favourite place for the Ewes to lamb. I’ve picked up a few here over the years so it is the first port of call in the morning. Lost one here to the Eagle last year.

The Twins

On Thursday last on a cracking late afternoon, I came back from Portree to find a set of twins just born at the side of our house, very lucky too as the female twin would not feed.

In The Sick Bay

We prepare the sheds for troublesome lambs, the male twin fed straight away but the smaller ewe lamb was struggling, much as we would point her in the right direction. So we had to bottle feed her Colostrum first them milk at four hour intervals. I suspect she did get a suck but it was hard going.

Beautiful Day For Skye Visit

I had an appointment with the Doctor and had planned a day off Rona for a while. I thought the lambs would start around the 6th but the Tup had other ideas. As it was it was a good day so no problem to check the sheep in the morning early and head off but not without picking up another new lamb, a good feeder this time.

Down in Sleat

I had planned a visit to Sleat to check out a boat and visit Scott MacKenzie Skye’s only Gamekeeper. He works at Fearann Eilean Iarmain Estate. A perfect day for an enjoyable visit. Hopefully more time next visit.

Back to Portree, loaded up.

After a couple of hours in Sleat it was up the road, shop, load up and back to Rona.

Tide Not Good For Loading

Really great to get a day like this in April, you do not mind carting the shopping up and down the gangway on days like this.

Even Lower Tide on Arrival

Unloading on a low tide is hard work so the sheep feed bags at 25kg could wait till the next day.

Tom Hanks!!

Next day a better tide but not such good weather, the high tides just now throw up all sorts of rubbish. It is always disappointing to see ‘stuff’ arriving on Rona. When out looking for lambs this morning I had a look into a cove over the back here and it was full of new plastic, we will have to go when the tide is good and weather calm to clean it up. It was not long ago last year that we cleaned it up.

Happy Easter

A bit belated but Happy Easter, Thursdays Mail produced this egg, eggcellent!

Feeding Now

Good news, as of Monday evening the ewe lamb is feeding off the mother but still comes running when I appear, looking for a bottle.

About Bill Cowie

I've been living on the island since April 2002, alone for the first 5 years, my partner L joined me in 2007. We manage the Island for a Danish family who bought the Island in the early 90's. Their hopes for the Island are to make it self sufficient supporting its inhabitants and that is where we come in. We look after the stock, 3 holiday cottages, machinery, boat and of course the visitors. It is pretty challenging but it is a beautiful place to live and work, we love it and strangely enough we love it even more in the depths of winter when all is quiet apart from the gales and rain. We do a bit of fishing, stock work, stalking deer and loads of other stuff. We have good support from lots of people whom we have met over the years and have become involved in the Island. Too many to mention here but keep an eye on the blog, they'll be there for sure in the future.
This entry was posted in The Views and of course the weather. Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to April Snow

  1. cazinatutu says:

    I had to double-check the date on this post because I thought I’d stumbled across an old winter one by mistake.

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