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The final countdown

Bernice Parker, 25 March 2015

Another successful lambing season at St Fagans is drawing to a close. We hope you’ve enjoyed watching all the action live on Lambcam along the way. There are still a few ewes left to deliver, as I write this the lamb-o-meter has clocked up 144. We’re on course to beat our target of 150 lambs, and hope to pass 160. That figure includes:

  • 5 sets of triplets
  • One set of quads (our first ever).

There’s been some losses along the way:

  • One set of twins - early miscarriage.
  • One set of twins – stillborn.
  • Four lambs accidentally smothered by their mothers
  • One triplet failed to thrive – died at 2 days old.

We are expecting to finish with two lambs being bottle fed – that’s Herbert, the smallest of the quads, and another lamb whose mother's milk dried up due to mastitis. So until next year, here is a picture of Herbert enthusiastically tucking into his lunch yesterday.

 

Herbert the lamb eating his lunch - with half of it over his face

See you in 2016 Lambcam-ers!

I Spy…Nature out and about

Katie Mortimer-Jones, 24 March 2015

Last year Staff from the Departments of Natural Sciences, and Learning, Participation and Interpretation took their I Spy…Nature themed pop-up museum out into the community. This year we have been delivering I Spy…Nature related workshops throughout March as part of the I Spy…Nature Exhibition outreach programme. Workshops at National Museum Cardiff allowed members of the public to carry out fieldwork within the museum, bringing the outside in! Visitors were able to explore the miniature world of British Slugs and Snails, go pond dipping, explore a rocky shore (utilising our brand new portable 3D Rocky shore) and go worm charming with our OPAL Community Science officer. During the middle part of March, staff ran a series of school workshops both at National Museum Cardiff and within a local primary school, where pupils could explore the seafloor, Fossils and Minerals before trying their hand at scientific illustration with a local artist.  The aim of these sessions was to inspire children to explore their natural environment and also to give them a chance to experience the work that museum scientists do. For British Science and Engineering Week, staff held an I Spy…Nature Open day in the main Hall at National Museum Cardiff, with a plethora of specimens from our collections and even a giant lobster, fly and squirrel!

 For more information on the I Spy…Nature activities see our Storify Story.

Viewing lichens with OPAL community scientist

I Spy...Nature workshops at Cogan Primary School

I Spy...Nature workshops at National Museum Cardiff on fossils

Exploring our 3D rocky shore model

Wrth ddarllen cofnodion diweddar @DyddiadurKate, mae’n hawdd anghofio am gysgod y rhyfel ar fywydau trigolion y Sarnau. Heblaw am un nodyn byr am orymdaith y milwyr drwy Feirionnydd ac ambell gyfeiriad at gasglu arian er budd y Belgiaid, dyw Kate ddim yn ymhelaethu rhyw lawer am y rhyfel yn ei dyddiadur.

Mae’n rhaid cofio nad oedd effaith y rhyfel ar y ffrynt cartref mor amlwg yn ystod misoedd cynnar y brwydro. Wrth gwrs, dyma’r cyfnod cyn gorfodaeth filwrol a chyn i ddinistr y cyfandir ddylanwadu ar bob cymuned a theulu mewn rhyw fodd. Ar ddechrau 1915, nid oedd prinder llafur ar ffermydd Cymru, nac ychwaith gofid am gynhyrchiant bwyd – roedd bywyd bob dydd yn mynd yn ei flaen fel arfer.

Ond er hyn, erbyn diwedd Mawrth 1915 rydym yn gweld yn nyddiadur Kate ambell awgrym fod y rhyfel yn nesau at adref. Ar 18 Mawrth, mae’n nodi’r canlynol:

18 Mawrth – Myfi yn mynd ir seiat. Seiat ymadawol a R. Daniel Jones

Mae enw Robert Daniel Jones yn ymddangos droeon yn y dyddiadur rhwng Ionawr a Mawrth 1915. Roedd ymhlith cylch cymdeithasol Kate a’i theulu ac yn ymwelydd cyson â Tyhen. Hyd y gwela i, roedd yn byw yn y Derwgoed ac yn gweithio fel gwas ffarm efallai?

22 Chwefror – Berwi pen mochyn, a thoddi lard. Myfi yn mynd ir Hendre. Tomi a Richard yma min nos. Robert Daniel Jones yn ymadael or Caerau ir Derwgoed yn wael.

Yng nghefn ei dyddiadur, roedd Kate yn cadw cofnod o gyfeiriadau ffrindiau oddi cartref. Ymhlith yr enwau, mae tri cyfeiriad ar gyfer Robert Daniel Jones – pob un yn gysylltiedig â 7fed Bataliwn y Ffiwsilwyr Brenhinol Cymreig. Wrth bori dogfennau milwrol y Rhyfel Mawr ar-lein, mae’n dod yn amlwg pam fod seiat ymadawol iddo ar 18 Mawrth 1915 – pum niwrnod yn ddiweddarach ymrestrodd â’r fyddin. Gallwch weld ei gerdyn medalau fan hyn.

Ffurfiwyd 7fed Bataliwn y Ffiwsilwyr Cymreig yn y Drenewydd ym Medi 1914. Bataliwn Meirionnydd a Maldwyn oedd hon â grewyd i wasanaethu gartref, yn hytrach na thramor. Ar 22 Ebrill 1915, symudodd y bataliwn i Northampton – ffaith sy’n cael ei ategu yng nghefn dyddiadur Kate:

Pte R. Daniel Jones

3679 2/7th Batt RWF Co. D

c/o Mrs Callon

78 Adams Avenue

Northampton

Prin iawn yw’r sôn am Robert Daniel yn y dyddiadur wedi Mawrth 1915. O’r cerdyn medalau sydd i’w ganfod yn y National Archives yn Kew, rydym yn gwybod iddo oroesi’r rhyfel.  Cafodd ei ryddhau o’r fyddin ar 22 Ebrill 1916 oherwydd gwaeledd. Mae natur ei salwch yn ddirgelwch, ond mae un cyfeiriad yng nghefn y dyddiadur yn ei leoli yn ysbyty filwrol Cherryhinton, ger Caergrawnt:

Pte R. D. Jones 3679

2/7 Battalion RWF D Coy

Transport Section

Cherryhinton Military Hospital

War 6. C.

Cambridge

Roedd Robert Daniel ymhlith y cyntaf o gyfoedion Kate i ymuno â’r fyddin. Cadwch lygad ar y blog dros y misoedd nesaf i glywed mwy am hanes y lleill.

Os oes rhagor o fanylion gennych am Robert Daniel Jones, neu unrhyw berson neu leoliad sy’n cael eu crybwyll yn y dyddiadur, ebostiwch neu gadewch neges isod. Diolch yn fawr!

how do you know if a sheep is in labour?

Bernice Parker, 18 March 2015

Hello Lambcam-ers - here is the answer to the most frequently asked question of this year's lambing season.

'How can you tell when a sheep is in labour?'

Here are some of the signs that you can look out for:

  • Hiding away quietly in the corner – this behaviour would be to avoid predators in the wild.
  • Licking the lips – a preparation for cleaning the lamb after it is born.
  • Restless standing up and lying down.
  • Pawing at the ground – scratching up a soft ‘nest’ for the lamb to be born into.
  • Visible straining at regular intervals.
  • Visible mucus, water bag or a pair of feet protruding from the ewe’s back end!

And now here's a gratuitously cute picture of St Fagans first ever set of quads. Born last night...

The St Fagans shepherd, with the first set of quads ever to be born at the museum

Watch a view live from the lambing shed to see the action unfold

As part of the redevelopment project at St.Fagans National History Museum, we wish to open our doors to volunteers and invite them to work alongside the Preventive Conservation team, helping to care for the collections on open display in the historic houses. There are hundreds of objects on display ranging from furniture, textiles, pottery and agricultural equipment. Providing plenty of opportunities to share a skill or learn something new.


Caring for this site is no mean feat, we currently have 26 furnished properties including a castle. Plus there are 4 new buildings on the way, including a medieval hall and the Vulcan pub! So plenty to keep us busy. The Museum is also open throughout the year and can have up to 700,000 visitors during that time, which means we are kept on our toes making sure everything continues to look good, day in and day out.

This work is a combined effort, involving staff from many different sections, which often goes on behind the scenes unnoticed by visitors. However, we wish to change this and provide opportunities for volunteers to assist us, not only in the care of objects, but also contribute to interpretation and help inform the public.


We are currently refurbishing one of the cottages on site, aiming to provide a comfortable and creative work space for our new collection care volunteers. We hope to start recruiting in May so if you're interested, I'll be posting more updates as the project continues to progress.

Preventive conservation and collection care. Our objects come in all shapes and sizes and range of materials.

Volunteer project. Rag rugs, from the collection, being used as inspiration to help recreate authentic rugs for the historic houses.

Some of the largest objects we care for at St.Fagans belong to the agricultural collection.