Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Granite's home and Bo is Happy

Kim Nikolai came to pick up Harrison yesterday and she brought our natural colored BFL ram, Granite, back home to us. I was dreading having to shovel and pick away all the snow and ice to get my fences undone and move the sheep around. But it all went surprisingly well. Thankfully the temps were in the twenties, so the weather wasn't bad at all.

Harrison calmly followed his ewe group into the pole building and was enticed into the catch pen with a little alfalfa.

When Granite was unloaded and placed in his intended pen, he promptly jumped right out. Fortunately he happy to be home, but just a little confused about where he should stay. After seeing that his old pen was now occupied by Bo and Lana, he followed me through the backyard, the garage, the driveway and over to the little red barn where he hopped into the lean-to pen with the five polled boys. He's such a nice fellow. There was a little head butting and he seems to have a thing for the Ile de France/Dorset ram lamb, but they are all getting along okay.

Then it was time to put Lana back with the ewes and get Bo in a different pen with a wether. That's when things went awry. Little Bo was looking so good and he was so happy to see all the ewes in the pole building. I wound up putting him in Granite's empty pen with FIVE Shetland mules. What a happy little guy he was! This means three Shetland Mule ewe lambs will be exposed that I wasn't planning on breeding. I'll just leave them together for one week, until the three polled boys go to the Braham Food locker. Maybe the Mule ewe lambs won't get bred. I shouldn't have deviated from my plans, but when you start thinking about the possibilities, all the planning seems to go by the wayside.

3 comments:

  1. I'm having a good chuckle at your change of "plans." :-)

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  2. Plans do have a way of changing, don't they? :)

    I have had some moments this winter when I wondered what I was thinking last summer and fall. Why did I keep Violet for breeding instead of Sunflower? And of course I never expected to be buying bred BFL ewes in December.

    Now, I keep wondering about pulling the rams out of their breeding groups when I want to raise the nutrition of my ewes in February. Will the Shetland ram and BFL ram get along well enough if it is just the two of them together?

    And I am really hoping that all breeding took place before December. It just seems simpler to have a group of Shetlands and a group of BFL's right now, so each ram is still with his ewes.

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  3. I'm thinking of pulling those ewe lambs out this weekend and putting a wether in with Bo for a couple days. Then I will blend the two of them in with Granite and the IdF/dorset on Monday after the 3/4 boys leave. We're in for some severe cold temps so I want to just have two pens by then - rams and ewes.

    Bo has small horns (scurs?) and is smaller than the polled rams, so he was pretty scared when I tried to put him in with them before. I don't think he will fight too much, but in the past my horned ram lambs were much too aggressive to put in with my adult BFL ram. That's why I decided to breed for polled Shetlands.

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