Every spring our sheep are in need of a trimming. This year was no exception.
Bossy is looking huge, she probably has 4-5 inches of wool on her.
The sheep start looking straggly and a mess as some of the wool begins to be pulled out.
In the past we have done the shearing ourselves. But it is time consuming, and to be honest we are not quite the best at it. This year we decided to hire a local shearer, what would have taken us a weekend of work took him about two hours. It was great to have a professional come as he was willing to help teach Jesse how to shear quickly and even fixed our trimmers.
I was at my day job when the shearing occurred so I only have before and after pictures, no action shots.
This is Sweet Pea, looking a little ragged.
Mini Mumps, feeling good after her haircut. The sheep appear so much smaller after their giant coats are taken off.
Bixler's Girlfriend enjoying the wind on her skin.
Earlier this spring we started shearing the sheep. Since we are small, and just getting started we opt to do this chore ourselves. One day I hope to be able to hire someone, but until then we do a few each day until they are done. For us Gaston is the hardest, he is large, strong and wants to prove his dominance. We don't always do the prettiest job, but our work serves it's purpose, to get the sheep cool for the summer.
Lambing time is finally upon us. We typically start breeding after our county fair, which is the first week in October; this puts us due for March lambs.
There are a few chores that need to be completed before lambing, one of those is referred to as crutching. Crutching is the removal of wool around the rear end and udder of the sheep to aide in lambing and to get rid of any dangling wool that could be confused for a teat. If lambs try to suckle dirty, dangling wool, they could contract intestinal infections such as E. Coli that could be detrimental to a young lamb.
With lambs due in just a few days we spent some time crutching our ewes.
The seaman tells stories of winds, the ploughman of