Showing posts from October, 2009

River Oaks Greyson

I finally got a photo of the button scurred ram lamb I plan to use on a few Shetlands this fall. I'm only going to breed a 3-4 Shetland ewes this year.  I've still got quite a few sheep here and I'm hesitant to bring more lives into being than we have the resources to care for on our little bit of pasture.

His name WAS going to be Sebastian, but for some reason I kept calling his half brother that name and it was starting to stick.  Then one day I heard about Florida Senator Alan Grayson on the news and I thought, Greyson would be a great name for a grey ram out of Kimberwood Harrison and Bramble Cordelia.  So I registered him as River Oaks Greyson and then I found out that Juliann has a ram named Greyson too.  Oops!

Anyway, there he is above at age 6 months... 

And this is his back view from August... You can see that he's Ag, but so far his fleece is holding that beautiful grey color.  I hope it keeps on holding!

Below is a fleece photo taken the other day with a fl…

Flock Changes & 2009 Breeding Plans

Well things have changed a lot in the past 10 days or so!

As I went through my paperwork prior to my annual SFCP inspection last week, I came across photos and information on LOTS of sheep that have come and gone over the years. There were so many special sheep that I had to let go. That got me started thinking I should concentrate more on fiber and a less on lamb production. So I decided to get out of the third tier market lamb portion of my flock and just stick with the purebred Shetlands and BFLs.  Fortunately I found a new home for my Shetland Mules and Ile de France/Dorset ram. They will be close by and I will be able to keep tabs on their production and answer any questions from their new owner.

The mules will be leaving soon and the Ile de France/Dorset left yesterday to breed a few Mules at another farm. You can see he was all ready for that assignment! When he returns in mid-November, he'll go straight to his new owner where the girls will be all settled in and ready fo…

Getting to know you

We've been getting to know Shachah, inlcuding how to spell his name correctly. :-)
He seems to like me, he wags his tail and wants me to pet him. I figured out yesterday that he needs to be let out of the chain link kennel to relieve himself, doesn't want to soil his kennel. So now he gets the run of the backyard a few times a day. This way he's getting to know the smell of our kitties and Ozzie.
He's getting more used to Ozzie too.  No more barking or growling there.  I haven't let them meet without a fence in between them yet, but I think it might be time to try pretty soon. 
Last night I suddenly thought about our neighbor's super cute little King Cavilier cross, Kia.  She comes over fairly often.  She doesn't bother anything so we don't mind her visiting.  Well she came over this afternoon just after I let Shachah out of his kennel. I got to her first and petted her to show Shachah that she was okay.  He didn't even bark, he just sniffed he…

We got ourselves a Guard Dog!

We picked up Shacaw this afternoon.  He's a 5 year old Great Pyr/Akbash guard dog who needed a new home because his owners are moving out of state at the end of month. He's so big and seems so calm, just having him laying near the sheep pen gives me a sense of security.

As soon as we let him out of the dog crate, he focused right in on the sheep and they focused in on him...

Of course they're in separate pens for now. After Shacaw accepts us and Ozzie, we'll see how he does with the sheep.  So far he's very laid back.  Mostly just laying around sniffing the breeze.

And since it's been snowing all day, it's nice that he's decided to use the small calf hut we put in there for him.

Getting ready for the S-Word

I got so much done Friday! The forecast of SNOW for Saturday morning was enough to get me off my butt and outside getting things done for fall.

First thing was to move the Shetland geese out of the backyard.  I just love how they still consider me their leader and they follow me closely wherever I go.  I love the sound of their feet paddling along behind me. After they explored the hostas for a while, I took them out of the gate and down the steep hill to introduce them to the pond...

We haven't gone down to the pond much this year and the path was a bit treacherous, but they seemed very eager to get down there.  Once there, they looked and looked, and nibbled some grasses, but they didn't dare leave my side to go in the water.  So back up we went.

I got them inside the chain link fence with the adult rams.  One of ganders immediately grabbed a hold of Peppy our Ile de France ram, but it didn't phase Peppy a bit.  He just wanted a sniff, as did Granite and Socks.  The poo…

Shetland Mules for Sale or TRADE

I still need to cut back on my sheep numbers here. I'd like to breed for solid-sided polled gulmoget Shetlands, so I will retain all twelve of my Shetlands.  And I can't keep up with the demand for white BFL fleece, so the BFLs will be staying too.
Unfortunately, I just don't have pasture here to keep 30 sheep year round.
That means the Shetland mules will be the ones to go.  As much as I hate to let them go, I certainly don't want to send them the sales barn as culls. 

They are priced at $100 each, after breeding season exposure to an Ile de France/Dorest cross ram, they will be priced at $125 each. There are three two-year-olds and three one-year-olds.

All are white and all are friendly with fabulously crimpy fleece.

Beautiful girls with good lambing histories. Two of the yearlings have not lambed.

I am willing to be creative and would consider giving them to a good home in return for 50% of their 2010 lamb crop (ram lambs only) and 50% of their 2010 fleeces.

Our …

Guard Dog Possibility - photos added

Okay, am I crazy or too much of a worry wart?  There is a 1/2 Great Pyrenees, 1/2 Akbash guard dog available near me.

He's 5 years old, has been raised with sheep.  He's good with sheep, children, cats, other farm animals. He's excellent with newborn lambs, and never was aggressive to sheep.

I went to meet him the other day and he's very mellow...

and very BIG.

The only things holding me back from snapping him up are:
1.) his history of arthritis in a back leg (he can't jump fences anymore)
2.) my lack of previous experience with any kind of guard dog.
3.) my husband doesn't think we need a guard dog since we've never had any losses in the 8 years we've had sheep here. 

#1 makes me nervous about possible vet bills in the future.  The previous owners have given him glucosamine pills in the past, but now just an aspirin when he's stiff and sore.  They say it's been a long time since he's needed any aspirin. They say having a shelter for h…