Shetland Sheep: Rich in History, Rich in Textiles

Shetland Sheep: Rich in History, Rich in Textiles! Our farm mission is to enjoy and promote the wonderful diversity of the Shetland breed by fully utilizing to the best of our ability all they have to offer historically. We believe the best preservation and management of this breed includes it's full spectrum of history. We encourage old and new shepherds alike to join in the fun by engaging in fiber arts, especially spinning and knitting, as this breed is so intimately linked with those aspects of the arts.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

What are they looking at?

 What's that???
Yikes!  Should we run for cover??

Pretty soon, the ducks and hens will be pretty stressed out around here!  EAA is coming which means things will be changing around here for a few days.  We'll go from hens lolloping across the lawn chasing frogs or grasshoppers to hens under cover of trees and barns...narry a hen in sight.  What drives the change?  Planes!

Poultry don't like planes.  I know, I know...this is a sheep blog....but this week marks hen-diving week as planes begin buzzing...roaring...sputtering...whirling...diving...and smoking across our skies.  Not one will go unnoticed by the flock!  Every plane brings fear in the hearts of ducks and hens.  Is it a hawk?  An eagle?  Quick everyone!! Run for cover!!!

The first few planes that go by cause everyone to dive for cover, but then they come out pretty quick again, and continue their journey across the lawn searching for something delicious to eat.  However, by the end of the week, you can step outside and see no one.  Tired of continous fear, they can be found huddling together under pine trees, or dustbathing in the barn under the cover of a roof.  It's not until the skies return to quiet stillness that they finally begin venturing out once again.

We don't live near the airport, but the planes are numerous and flying around all day.  The sheep are not fazed.  They continue their peaceful grazing and dozing, completely oblivious to the fact that a bomber...or six... might be flying directly overhead...bombers that once may have bombed old stone buildings in urban areas of Europe...a bomber whose sound may have struck terror in the hearts of souls on the ground, hearing them approach.  It's a fascinating week where the emphasis comes off the sheep and onto the poultry.  Poor hens!  Poor ducks!  But they'll survive!

Back to sheep farming...we had a gorgeous morning for market on Saturday!  The heat and humidity of last week passed on while cooler, drier air settled in without any wicked storms.  How nice!  We surely could use the rain, though.  The ground is beginning to get small contraction cracks already, so a good steady rain would be timely right now.  If you wanted to pick up a sunrise ball of yarn, I have some in stock now.  They are very popular so if you want one, don't wait too long to pick it up!  Or you can email us and we can send it to you.

Flowers on the farm

Also, I'm debating selling Wheely Wooly Moorwyn as a breeding ram.  He can be registered, is very docile and sweet, and all black, possibly fading to soft grey.  In fact, he comes from a now long line of proven sweeties in temperament and super nice spinability.  His mother, Mona, has given us outstanding ram lambs, and I've culled none of them.  We still have Lerwick, Whirly, and Fair Isle.  Lerwick has given us outstanding lambs, Whirly's first lamb crop came this year, and Fair Isle I held off breeding as he had one horn that was questionable, that has since gone straight up and away, which made me gleeful!  I was there the moment he was born and he was outstandingly vigorous and was baaing during his birth, then up within a couple of minutes!  I've never seen anything like that vigor before or since.  His fleece is super soft and longish, wavy, so he too is a real keeper.  If you are looking for a docile ram with excellent spinning fleece, Moorwyn might be just what you're looking for. 

That's all for now!  Have a good day everyone!

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