Bye, bye Shetlies! Sniff.

Bye, Shelties!

I posted this story on a couple of sheep boards: Sheep Production Forum and Homesteading Today Sheep

We had settled on breeding Icelandic sheep when friends of a friend needed to get rid of this flock when they lost their farm in Vermont, so we took them in. (free sheep in winer — the start of a parable … )

Keeping two separate breeds is trickier than we want right now, so we would like to find a home for them. We are aiming for a sheep dairy ourselves, and it is really rare to milk Shetland ewes.

Two of them have papers, three of them are registerable, and we will put you in touch with the original buyers. The ram is not registered.

There are four ewes, almost certainly bred, one ewe lamb that we are not breeding, and one ram.

Two of the ewes are fantastic mothers (Jarret and Valentine), twinning with lambs that bounce. Two of them were bottle babies themselves, and each gave a single who we had to supplement and teach them about mothering. We are giving them a second chance this year. (Cocoa and Sassy)

They came with a Shetland/Icelandic cross wether (Leon), and though I should send him with his girls, he has become my favorite sheep. We’ll have to talk about him!

We are in southwest New Hampshire. I have a two-horse trailer that they will all fit into, so can deliver within a reasonable range.

They thrive on so little hay compared to my Icelandics that it is crazy. They browse as well, and prefer brambles to grass. I give them a little grain each day, mostly to keep them a bit tamer.

Anyway, they’d make a great little flock for someone trying to reclaim fields. They are trained to electronet, and are not houdinis like my Icelandic girls.

Very sweet, pretty fleeces, mini sheep almost.

I got a lot more interest in the little darlings than I had expected. After discussing it with several people, I decided to give them to the folks at Sunpower Farm. They will fit right in with their Mini Monadnock breeding program.

I think it’s the best solution, because two of the girls were never registered, and none of them were really tame. A lot of the folks talking to me about the herd understandably wanted tame, registered sheep.

They came by today and picked them up, just like that. Poof! The empty pen makes me miss them already. We did keep Leon, which we are very glad of. I was really worrying about leaving them on their own without him, but they are going to a bigger farm, so will not need him.

We were glad to have known them, and have forever visiting privileges.

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