by Kaylin Beach, Museum Educator and Volunteer Coordinator
Every year during lambing season, there is always at least one cuddly, lovable baby lamb who needs a surrogate mother. Honestly, as much as I want our Hog Island sheep to raise their own young in a healthy and independent way, it is a wonderful treat to have a bottle baby!
A friendly baby Nigel says hello to the camera.
My first year at the farm, we had a particularly adorable bottle baby. You may know the little fuzzy fellow by his given name, Sir Nigel Nicely Nicely. Yes, that incredible wether who ran for Mayor of the Barnyard came from humble beginnings. Rejected by his mother, Nuget, because he was smaller than his sister and less likely to prosper, Nigel would not have survived had Farmer Polly not stepped up to be a surrogate mother. Truthfully, the whole office quickly became his flock of surrogates, caring for Nigel so well that he began to think he was a ‘people’.
Today, Nigel is full-grown, grows a beautiful fleece every year, and has become quite the entrepreneur. Still, whenever I see him, I picture that sweet little lamb who used to chew on my apron every Saturday on the National Colonial Farm, and who quickly found his way into everyone’s hearts.