NSW Bushfire Victims Find Sheep Had Given Birth In The Chaos
A NSW couple who lost their home to bushfires got some surprising news when they were reunited with their sheep – the ewe was pregnant and had given birth in the chaos.
Emily Whyman and Simon Little had been putting out spot fires in Bobin near Taree at the time when they learnt their ewe had given birth.
They didn't even know she was pregnant.
"We thought our lambing season was over two months ago. We thought our last lamb had dropped, so this was a bit of a surprise," Whyman told 10 daily.
"But it rounded it up to an even number of sheep which was good," she laughed.
The couple was forced to open the gates to their farmland and let their sheep out when the fires threatened their property on Friday.
The pair weren't sure their sheep would survive such brutal conditions but were amazed to hear one had given birth to a baby lamb.
"The mum and the lamb were off by themselves and our friends brought them some feed that we got from local land services, as well as some water," Whyman said.
"Now there's this new lamb which is just remarkable. We've called it 'Smokey' after the fires," she said.
The couple had been in the middle of building their new home when the fires struck and they were forced to flee the caravan they were living in on their farm.
Whyman's mother started a GoFundMe after the pair were forced to evacuate last Friday.
The flames left the scene of their new home looking more like the apocalyptic land of Mordor from Lord Of The Rings.
The couple told 10 daily it had been a "terrifying" few days.
"It was completely black with fires happening periodically," Whyman said.
"It was dark, so you couldn't really see much. You could see all the hills and the valleys because they were glowing. There were trees falling over the road and fire trucks trying to get through," Little added.
Their family business Old Hill Farm has been impacted and half of the couple's belongings have been destroyed.
The couple has had to move into their friend's home, but that home is also at risk of being destroyed.
"We spent all day yesterday wetting down our friend's home with wet blankets over every surface in the house. We were in emergency mode and then we had to evacuate to Wingham and police moved us out and we had to flee from Wingham into Taree," Little said.
The farming family said for the past year they've been watching soil dry out and trees defoliate and die during the drought.
"We've had to flee our homes twice. I do rain forest regeneration and this fire is the icing on the cake. I want to be clear that this is not normal," Whyman said.
"I think for 200 years we've treated Australia like it's Europe and ignored the 60,000 plus years of fire management that First Australians had in place to avoid these catastrophic fires."
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