Monday, March 16, 2009

Shearing Day

Yesterday was my first shearing day for my two wether lambs (even though they're pretty big, both are under a year old, and will keep growing for another year or so). Not their first time, though, they were shorn at the farm they came from at about 3 1/2 months old, when the ewes were shorn. I forgot to take a picture before we loaded up and let, but here are a couple from a couple of months ago - pretty long wool!
(they are very different sizes, Sven the black boy is Wensleydale/Cotswold/Gotland, and Ingemar the brown boy is 3/4 Shetland/1/4 Gotland)

I took the boys over to my friend Loyce's farm, since she has a small flock too and this meant the shearer only had to set up once. Beth the shearer was great, especially since my boys weren't happy about the process and Loyce's sheep hadn't been shorn in about a year and a half, so they were long and felted, but with lovely usable wool under the outside matting.

The boys are still lamb enough that they were pretty scared about new experiences (traveling and a different barn), though they were good on their leads and in the trailer. Ingemar had started to roo so had to be clipped very near his skin to get the slightly matted rooing ends off - that fleece will take a bit more work for me to prepare for spinning. Since it was raining, windy and sleeting here in between sunny periods, both boys got sweatshirts to wear when we got home-

(which make them look pretty silly, and their heads look ENORMOUS)

They are silly, and doing a lot of chasing each other around the pen type sheep games. Ingemar is even doing some of the jumping vertically type things that I haven't seen in months. They're getting extra rations right now, too, so that they can grow some insulation quickly.

Beth the shearer says that because I have a longwool and a primitive, they should really be sheared 2x a year. This is great- she lives nearby so getting her over won't be difficult, and it means I get 4 fleeces a year instead of 2. I'm looking forward to working with the fleeces, which both need skirting more heavily as we were too busy to do it at the shearing.

Yes, Sven is jet black, with no sun-bleached tips. The lock at right is about 7" long, and other parts of the fleece are over 8". Lucky, aren't I?


Blogger Ann said...

Wow, that's really long. Lot's of combing ahead of you. Question - is Ingemar dual coated?

6:27 PM, March 17, 2009  
Blogger Michele said...

Wow, that is some wool! And I love the sweatshirts on the boys :)

7:27 PM, March 17, 2009  
Blogger PNWBookGirl said...

Great pictures and yes, I am envious!

4:14 AM, March 18, 2009  
Blogger Lanea said...

Hubba hubba!

9:09 AM, March 20, 2009  
Blogger Jennifer said...

What Lanea said.

Can't wait to see the sheepies, and the fleeces, in person ~



9:26 AM, March 21, 2009  
Blogger purlewe said...

so explain rooing to me? like dreadlocks maybe???

11:26 AM, April 09, 2009  

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