Friday, June 14, 2013

Shearing Day Tomorrow

I always get excited and nervous about shearing day.  I raise sheep and goats for wool and mohair.  Getting the fiber off the animals is very important.  It does not improve if left too long on the animal.    I've ordered vaccines, syringes and bags to put the wool in.  I've hired helpers and will purchase wormers today.  I panicked on the way home from work in the pouring rain when I realized the sheep are outside.  Herded the very hungry and confused sheep back into the barn when I got home.  They wanted to go out to pasture to graze but I wanted them to go inside and dry off.   The sun is out today and everything should be fine.   Tonight I rake out the part of the barn where Jim will set up his board and put up a table for skirting.  Mia is coming up from New Jersey to help, which I feel badly about as she works such long hours.  She has Father's Day complications back home and has to leave early on Sunday.  Rounding up the sheep and getting them penned in is not easy in my barn with the hay pack up so high and holes everywhere for the animals to escape through.  No fancy handling equipment on this farm.  Hopefully Loren and Randy, long-time farm hands and very sturdy young men, will wrangle the big, giant monsters without mishap.  We have lots of babies running around that have to be put aside to avoid being run over.   White sheep first, then black sheep, then goats.  Then a lot of time for me, sorting and skirting fleeces.  The weather looks promising, with sunny skies and cool temps.  This is late to shear, but there are advantages to doing it this late.  Less chance for flies to burrow in and lay eggs resulting in the nasty fly-strike.  Better get home and get organized for tomorrow.  Me?  Organized?  No such thing.

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