It might not feel quite like spring, but a sure sign spring is coming is that lambing season has begun at Kline Creek Farm, the Forest Preserve District of DuPage County's 1890s living-history farm in West Chicago.
A few lambs already have joined the flock of Southdown sheep, and several ewes are expected to give birth over the coming weeks. Visitors may see the lambs and talk with staff and volunteers about their care during normal hours from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursdays through Mondays at the farm, 1N600 County Farm Road, West Chicago. Outbuildings, including the sheepfold, close at 4:30 p.m. Admission is free.
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"Sometimes Mom can do everything on her own, but our staff and volunteers are at the ready this time of year to intervene if needed for a successful birth," says Keith McClow, manager of Kline Creek Farm. "We're always ready to share the historical perspective with visitors, too, so they learn how lambs provide income for farmers and what it takes to raise them."
Staff and volunteers prepared for lambing season by caring for the mothers-to-be with prenatal vaccinations and a bit of extra feed during pregnancy and thoroughly cleaning the barn. As the lambs grow, staff and volunteers will ensure they receive the nutrients and shelter they need.
During any visit to Kline Creek Farm, visitors of all ages are invited to tour the century-old farmhouse, see the farm's livestock and experience the daily activities of a working farm. The flock will take center stage during Sheep Shearing Weekend April 26 and 27.
For information on these and other opportunities at Kline Creek Farm, call (630) 876-5900.