Monday, September 18, 2006

fall chores

OK, I'm tired of driving places. I love being home. I have all kinds of things to do for fall.
First....I am counting sheep. I'm down...but then I'm up. I am down in numbers of yearling and older ewes, but the numbers go up when I count the ewe lambs here.
First chore for fall should be to make sure your registrations and transfers are in order. Yes, I registered a number of sheep....but no....I haven't gotten the transfers done yet.
I still have a few of my own girls who haven't been registered. I have an excuse, we had a wedding this year. That occupied every waking hour for a long long time.
So I have been checking my computer records to make sure my sheepies are properly registered. A mention of records. Even though I have not "joined" the mad rush to volunteer scrapie status....I am required to keep records of every sheep born and their parents available.
I am up to 382 lambs born to my ewes here. That of course doesn't include anyone born after I bred and sold the ewes. I would guess I was present for about 300 of those births.
So now that I think I have most of my ewes and rams registered....I can think about breeding them. HAAAA!
That is the best part of raising sheep. Combining ewes and rams for the best lamb possible.
I was showing a few ewe lambs who had not been handled since they were born....and I noticed that after a few days of handling and loving....those little ewe lambs began to like having people pet I have a mini flock of girls in my barn right now.....Waiting for me to come catch and hold them.
Aside from that kind of fun....have you wormed lately?
We have had more frequent rains this year, and true to Missouri fame....the worms have been harder to deal with. I will have to worm before breeding this year. We used to catch everyone and worm and trim hoofs before breeding season. We don't have to trim hoofs here....there are so many rocks that the sheep keep them trimmed just walking.
OHHHH! It must be really fall. I pulled all my ram lambs out last night. Yes, I can tell...there is a chorus of baaing coming from the barn pens. Little boys waiting for mom to come feed them. Little!?? These boys are the biggest fat sheep...they are in many cases almost as tall as their moms.
I chose another bunch of show sheep for the naile show in November....I really need another pasture that doesn't have prickly bushes and nastys that get in the fleece, where I can run the show crew. I have a pen for the little boys....but not for the little girls. In September, I kept the girls in with the boys....but not for this time of year.
So now to the subject of breeding pens. Ideal breeding pens would be out of eye contact with any other sheep....with a shelter from rain, and plenty of hay and water. This becomes harder with the number of rams you are breeding. I used to have pretty good breeding pens for about 8 rams. I am down a bit here....and would love to put up a few more before the end of next month.
Have you considered where you are going to put extra rams? There is a fall exercise....going to the sale barn with extra ram lambs.
Well, I am off to pet girls now. Go hug a sheep for me.


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