Autumn Sheep and Goat Maintenance

We hired a shearer to do the fall shearing this year.  My back is not up for shearing anymore, and we have 11 sheep and goats that needed it.  Zander did a great job- no nicks on the sheep, and the fleeces look great.  Above is Dete, our Cotswold ewe, and below is our wethered Shetland lamb Sarge.

Since all the sheep and goats were penned, Tom went ahead and trimmed all their hooves, and I helped a small amount by giving worming medication and copper boluses.  Things got a little crowded, but now the fall maintenance is done.  Bring on winter!

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11 Responses to Autumn Sheep and Goat Maintenance

  1. Donna, the sheep look great! Love the picture of sarge. He has a look on his face like what in the world is going on?? I have been reading through your post looks like you have been quite busy. How in the world do you keep your sheep so clean? We just had 2 in a small pen and I swear they had dirt ball fights or something. We gave them baths before leaving for the festival, after everything else was packed I went to load the sheep. One had found a spot on a rusty gate and rubbed down both sides. She looked like she had orange racing stripes. Thank goodness we had time to give her another bath before showing.Sorry it’s been so long. I too am ready for winter, looks like I have some good reading for those long winter nights. Have a good one!

    • I loved his look too- poor guy! They stay fairly clean on pasture in the summer so the fall fleeces are quite nice. With hay feeding though, we start to see the VM. We are too busy. I am hoping things will settle down fairly soon.

  2. Chai Chai says:

    What is a copper bolus?

    • For the goats I break up cattle Copasure boluses into capsules and try to get them down their gullets before they chew them. We have copper deficiency problems here in our sheep and goats.

  3. Tammy says:

    I keep thinking I’m ready for winter, then I remember something else that HAS to be done, like yesterday. We are having lovely but cooler weather here. I don’t do any fall shearing, but the other maintenance chores on the sheep are pretty much done. Love the shearing pictures!

  4. Teresa says:

    I am so impressed that you are ready for winter. I’m taking tomorrow off work to try and get some things ready. I still need to force my son to hold goats so I can trim feet. It seems like I’ll never be ready. I’m not into fiber, but I can you tell it looks so soft in those pictures. Thanks for stopping by. We are just starting our winemaking for the fall! How is yours coming along?

    • Well, it is mostly Tom that work his behind off getting all those hooves trimmed. Plus we hired the shearer. We are trying to get smarter!
      It is really soft to touch. It always surprises me how much. There are a couple that aren’t, but we don’t breed them or sell their wool, we keep them for their personality. One ewe is starting to felt, which bums me out. But the rest of the flock is looking really good in their wool. But now hay feeding starts.
      Tom’s got the cider fermenting and last night I just got the wine started. There’s small batches of blackberry wine, red plum wine and golden plum-grape wine. I’ll post a little later how it’s going.

  5. rabbtux says:

    Hi Donna,
    I’m catching up on your blog. I’ve got to start mine up again when I get my computer working. I’m real glad you got a shearer. I know what a bad back feels like. It’s hard not to be able to do the things you are used to doing.
    We, too, are readying ourselves for a harsh winter up here. We have our hay, wood, propane. Snow is on the peaks around us and knocking at our door! Take Care.

    • Hello Jackie, Good to hear you are up and running on the internet again. I’ll catch up on your blog too. The shearer worked out great so I am thrilled. Poor little Diddley is looking mighty pitiful, but they have a barn and hay to stay warm. Plus the temperatures are warming here too.
      It is hard not to do things. I am having a really hard time with that, and my back seems to be getting worse not better which makes it even harder.
      I should have said the animals are ready for winter. We have to get our stash of wood pellets ready. We are wanting to build some shelters for the tractor and it’s implements. The old one was removed when we replaced the barn wall in the summer. I do not like to see equipment and vehicles sitting out in the rain and snow. But at least the critters are ready for what comes.

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