Friday, July 24, 2009

Daily Evaluations

Isn't it funny how day after day I sit and watch the lambs grow and yet every once in awhile there will be a lamb that catches my eye that hasn't in awhile. I guess with about 50 lambs that can happen from time to time :)

There are also ewes that I sit and scratch...that I realize must be moved on. They are such loves, but I am not raising sheep to be tame pets, although its nice to have a few that appreciate me :)

Of all the ram lambs that were born my biggest 'fail' was not the fleece or horns or bite. Shoulders are good, toplines are all acceptable, growth is fantastic, but some seem to be a tad hocky. Am I just being too picky?

I will have five F1 ram lambs that will be available for sale pending their horns continue to grow nicely. A few have that slight in at the hock, but not all. Three of them will be intermediate , a fawn, a black and a gray (Ag). The other two are very crimpy and single coated. I am ONLY keeping 9 F1 ram lambs to over winter. Yes you read that right. NINE. As in one less than 10 :)

With the straws I have left these could very well be the last F1 rams from these UK sires and the whole purpose of the AI was to keep ONE ram out of each ram via imported frozen semen. I just so happen to be keeping THREE Orion sons as I just cannot decide which of the 7 of them to keep.

I also have a yearling fawn katmoget ram that is 50% UK and can be sold with a starter flock of proven ewes. Up to 8 ewes available (all yearling or older) Trades for something I may be interested in are also a great idea:

1. cheviot x shetland ewe lambs
2. BFL ewes of high% UK
3. sheep fencing (new or used as long as it can be strung up and used right away!)
4. short cattle trailer or horse trailer
5. patio pavers (for dog runs) or chain link fencing/dog kennels

I WOULD prefer cash but if it means moving these 'extra' sheep out, I'd be interested!

3 comments:

Michelle at Boulderneigh said...

Only one (well, two counting Butter's lost ram lamb) of my six lambs this year is what I would call absolutely straight in the hocks as viewed from the rear (that's lovely Bronwen). But I expect to hit all home-runs in that department next year with Braveheart as sire; he puts the tails and nice hindleg set on his get! If someone gives full-poll ramling with those traits and finer fleece than dad's, I'll be flyin' high! And if Brava produces that desired ramling, I could use him on Bronwen and Bramble the following year.... Aren't we shepherds crazy with all this planning ahead? :-)

Karen Valley said...

I have found that the majority of Shetlands tend to turn in at the hocks slightly and don't worry about it. Might be because in the days when they had to forage over long distances for food they had to be more nimble of movement and anyone who has studied cutting horses, etc. knows that a slight inward turn of hocks means quicker spins.

Juliann said...

I don't sweat slight hocks or slight toe-ing out, as long as they arn't extreme.
I'm not into the concept of "show sheep", so don't expect show traits in a primative.
Karen I've also heard that the slight hocks/ toeing out allowed greater mobility over rocks and steep slopes. I noticed a ton of the prize sheep at the UK shows also toed out, so I don't feel so bad about some of mine.

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