Friday, January 23, 2009

Healthy Flock / Sheep Minerals/ On the Radio Too!

It's easy to take it for granted -- the joy and ease of a healthy flock of sheep. I've been feeling very blessed each morning when I go out and see all the sheep up and eager to be fed. No limping, no coughing, no loss of appetite, no runny poops, and no bloody heads in the ram pen. Yes, life is good. And hopefully plenty of little lambs are on the way for spring. So for now, life is easy.

Oh sure, we'll get more snow and there's a bitter cold front on the way. But the sheep don't mind the cold temps as long as they have shelter from the wind and bedding to keep them warm. The cold snap is not supposed to last very long.

I've decided to bring soon-to-be 10 year old Bramble Cordelia a handful of alfalfa pellets every day. She looks to be in good shape, but she may need a little extra to make it through another year and another pregnancy. I'm also using the pellets to tame Lana, our little black gulmoget ewe lamb. She's at the bottom of the pecking order in the ewe flock.
Cordelia is on the left in the photo above and next to her is Lana. Shadowing over Lana is Rhyn (BFL) and her daughter, Rhaya. Our other almost yearling BFL ewe, Leora, is behind Rhaya.

In this photo is our unregistered Shetland ewe, Mabeline and Lana. Mabeline gave me the nicest Mule lambs last year without losing condition. That is why she stayed here and the more delicate unregistered Shetland ewes found pet homes.

This is a shot of Mabeline's 2007 Shetland Mule daughter and Ozzie. I'm really thankful for Ozzie too. He's really turned into a great farm dog. Always ready to help me with the chores. Faithfully waiting outside closed barn doors at times and always ready if I see a mouse in the chicken feed bin. His fur is very silky soft. I've got a bunch of it saved to spin. Ozzie's only drawback is his incessant barking whenever anyone pulls in the driveway -- even us!

I'm checking on a new mineral put out by Pipestone Vets Big Gain program. There's a local supplier and the price looks right. But I'm waiting to see an actual breakdown of the mineral contents. We haven't had problems with mineral deficiencies using the Land O'Lakes sheep mineral with 37 ppm selenium, but I've heard that we should have 90 ppm selenium in this area of the country. The cheaper mineral locally available is only 30 ppm selenium.

Things have been so busy here with the art show coming up in two weeks. Bright and early yesterday morning I had to do a radio interview on how to enter the show (the entries are being sent to me - I'll do the title cards and show brochure, etc.). Public speaking always unnerves me, but it was very spur of the moment so I didn't have to worry about it long - just overnight. :-) We are so lucky to have a live and local radio station here in Mora. They are very supportive of the arts in this area. Within just minutes of doing the interview, I got a call from a listener who wanted to enter. :-)

7 comments:

  1. I still think that Ozzie is one of the prettiest dogs I've ever seen! I'd love to see more pictures of him....

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  2. I agree with Nancy. Ozzie is too beautiful for words. I suppose I should call him handsome... but I don't think he would mind. ;-)

    Love the pictures of the sheep. I think I was able to put faces to the names in the photos. I think Lana is adorable.

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  3. HI Becky, could you let me know what you learn about the pipestone mineral? would it be possible to scan the label if you get it? I use Uckele, which has worked great so far, but it also is something like 30 ppm selenium. It does have a host of other wonderful stuff in it though. (including kelp)

    stephen

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  4. Sure Stephen, I'll forward the mineral information to you when I get it. I'm hoping to have it before going to the Wisconsin Indianhead Sheep Breeder's Shepherd's Clinic on Feb. 7th. Woody Lane will be speaking there and he mentioned on Sheep-L that shepherds in this area we should have 90 ppm of selenium in their mineral, but I sure can't find any that high in selenium. The Pipestone people should know what local shepherds need.

    Thanks Nancy and Kat, it's funny how we take things for granted and then suddenly wake up and see how beautiful they are. Ozzie can drive us crazy with his barking, but he sure has become a part of our lives. I'm sure his presence helps to keep the predators away. You can see in the photos our fences aren't the greatest. :-)

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  5. is Ozzie an Aussie. I had to put nobark collars on my Irish Terriers, works great, they quickly learned the collars are on and respect the collar.

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  6. Yes Joanna, Ozzie is an Aussie. He's also kind of timid and sensitive. We bought a bark collar for him a couple years ago, but after reading the directions, we haven't had the heart to put it on him. I know, it's our own fault that he's still doing this. The thing is, I do want him bark to let me know people are there, but I'd like him to quit barking when I tell him to. Seems like the more we tell him to be quiet, the more he barks. I'm sure if he got shocked once, we'd never get the collar on him a second time.

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