Rest in Peace, Baamadeus

Our mom is so sad. Her extra-special ram, Baamadeus, died last Thursday afternoon.

by Martok

Miniature Cheviot ram
Photo by Sue Weaver
We’ll misss you, Baamadeus!

Our mom is so sad. Her extra-special ram, Baamadeus, died last Thursday afternoon.
Baamadeus’ story began in June 2008, when his mama, Baasha, started looking really fat. She was 12 years old and retired from breeding, living in a paddock with her friend Dodger and four ewe lambs born in 2007. A tall, woven wire fence separated them from four rams in an adjoining paddock.
Mom thought Baasha looked pregnant, but she wasn’t exposed to a ram, so how could that be? Even her udder looked big, but Dad said it was just because she was fat. So imagine Mom’s surprise when she got up on the morning of June 5 to find a huge, cute ram lamb frisking around Baasha, who was quite pleased to be a mom again.
How did she get pregnant? Through the fence! Remember when Big Mama and I made Big Mama’s twins? It’s difficult but it can be done.
Mom wanted to register and keep Baasha’s beautiful ram. But which of the rams was his dad? Then mom had an idea. Our sheep are Miniature Cheviots with long, wide bodies and short legs. It takes a degree of agility for a guy to line things up perfectly through a fence (ask me—I know), so Mom thought the three older rams were too long. Mom and Dad held each ram’s front legs and walked him on his hind legs up to the fence. The only one who could reach was Rumbler, Baasha’s yearling son.
Mom named the lamb Baamadeus, a name she’d been saving for an extra-special ram. Then, when he was 8 days old, something stung Baamadeus’ right ear. It swelled up and filled with fluid and the fluid came back every time it was drained. Eventually the fluid was reabsorbed, leaving Baamadeus with a crumpled ear. Mom told him when he was grown up it would make him look rugged. She was right.
Baamadeus grew and grew, and at weaning time, he moved in with his father and the other rams. He kept his cheerful personality and loved being scratched on the chin and chest. Baamadeus was a good ram who never made a fuss. Mom thought he’d be around for a long time, so he bred only two ewes before he died. His children are Goblin King, a brawny brown ram who looks a lot like his dad and our little girl-lamb friends, Sarah and Grace.
Last Wednesday morning, Baamadeus wasn’t with the other rams. He was lying in a Port-a-Hut alone. He had terrible gut spasms. Nothing helped, though everything possible was tried. He died on Thursday afternoon.
Farewell, Baamadeus. Mom loved you more than all the other sheep combined. You were a good ram. Uzzi and I will miss you, too.  

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