Sunday, June 06, 2010

Show lambs and old dams

On today's agenda: "shear" Inky and work on halter-training lambs. In deference to her age and condition, I put Inky on my stand and scissor-sheared her. She stood politely like the grand old dame she is. Her fiber is still so soft and black; I just had to take a mid-side sample to send in for micron testing. (I forgot to get samples from everyone else this year, so they'll have to wait until next spring.) Her fleece just glistens with lanolin, but doesn't smell at all this year (last year she was stinky and full of VM, so I tossed her fleece). It has some flakes at the rise; I will show it to Aunt Janet at Black Sheep Gathering when I hand over my other fleeces and see if she thinks it will process out. I would love to have some roving of hers to spin.

Last night Rick helped me tag the four big lambs, so they were probably feeling doubly persecuted today by halter training. Blake and Bodhran lead nicely in the fold, but walking on lead alone out in the wide, wide world is a whole 'nuther story! But after some leading and some standing around tied to the fence, they were both better behaved.

Halter-training isn't just for show lambs; good leading manners are appreciated in any sheep. So Banjo and Barry got their turns, too. Banjo has had one prior session; today was Barry's first experience and he wasn't thrilled. But walking around sweetly on the end of a lead at a sheep show can be a good marketing tool, so learn he must.


Yesterday was an absolutely gorgeous day - our first "average" day for this time of year in quite awhile! Today - well, let's just say that the weatherman got it wrong. It made for great follow-up flower shots, though, starting with the star of yesterday's post:
That's it for today at . . .

6 comments:

Kara said...

Blake is very handsome...good luck at the show.

thecrazysheeplady said...

I can't believe that's a scissor shear job. Wow!

And yes, halter breaking them all is a great idea. GL got out the other night and was belligerently (big surprise, eh?) not herding back in. I had to finally take my shirt off, wrap it around his neck Homer Simpson style and drag him back to the barn. Dragging 175 lbs of angry sheep...'not so great actually' ;-).

kenleighacres said...

It looks like your boys are well on their way! Halter breaking lambs is on our agenda for the end of this week. Looking forward to seeing you in a couple weeks!

Marie said...

Great job on hand shearing! All your boys lookd great too. I need to halter train my kid goats, I don't think I will the shetland ram lambs since they will be going to (can't say it out loud) next spring. It will be hard enough to send them as it is! I don't want to get attached to them. :( But I promised myself that my fiber critters had to atleast pay for themselves after the first couple of years.

Michelle said...

I know what you mean, Marie. I'm facing that this year with my senior ram, and it makes my stomach knot up.

Shula said...

I have to start halter training this week too! Your boys all look good and well done on your shearing.