Near Duach beach on Inishbofin was a newborn lamb and its mother. Like all baby creatures that can do little more than wobble about on oversized legs and guzzle milk for the first few weeks of its life, the lamb’s instinct is to hide in undergrowth for safety. The grassland near the beach was a thin green carpet over a mixture of rock and sand dunes, and the lamb had been sniffing around the depressions made by rabbit burrows when I took the bottom picture. Later, I spotted that it had snuggled down into a clump of nettles. I was marveling at how the instinct for concealment was so strong in such a young creature when it dawned on me that the lamb’s hiding place might have been a bit too secure. Approaching slowly so as not to panic the ewe, I walked over to the lamb. Sure enough, it had manage to jamb itself into a rabbit hole – its legs were caught underneath and it didn’t have the strength to get out.
The lamb was lucky, not just because I lifted it out of the hole but also because, given my culinary appetite for all things ovine, I had approached it carrying a camera rather than a knife and fork.