Sheep Shearing Day

Ian shearing Zelda, Liz shearing Liam, Fate and the rest of the sheep

Our Shearer Liz Willis brought some help with her today.

Ian is the grandson of Jim McRae, who used to be our shearer.  When she was 8 years old Jim taught Liz to shear sheep.  That was when she began her own flock of sheep too.  Now Liz has taken over for Jim after he retired and Ian is helping Liz.

Liz not only shears the sheep, but she clips and checks their hooves and the teeth of the older sheep. Griselle has been limping for a few days and Liz found a but of an infection in one of her hooves.  She trimmed the hoof back and we sprayed it with peroxide.  She said Griselle would limp for a few days but would heal.

Zelda and Griselle are both too skinny.  They are both old,  Zelda at least nine or ten.  Griselle still has all her teeth, but Zelda only has a couple of front teeth left.  That means she had a hard time eating hay and grass.

We’ll feed them both grain.  Griselle should gain some weight back, but it will be harder for Zelda without her teeth.  I’m thinking that after this summer it will be best to put Zelda down before the winter comes.  I certainly don’t want her starving to death or suffering unnecessarily.

Both Jon and Liz agreed that it would be best for her.  I’ll see what feels right when the winter comes.

All the other sheep are healthy and have grown some beautiful wool.

I’ll post more pictures and video later today and tomorrow.


4 thoughts on “Sheep Shearing Day

  1. Hi Maria, knowing nothing about sheep, what is the average life of sheep like you have? (by that, I mean, they are your “pets” and not being raised for a specific purpose – the wool is a beautiful bonus!)

    1. Nancy, an average lifespan of sheep is 10-12 years. Some can live longer of course. I don’t really see the sheep as my pets. But I’m not a farmer either, ( I don’t want to lamb again because I don’t want more sheep, but I don’t want to give the lambs away) so they fall somewhere inbetween. We did get them for their wool, and because Jon loves sheep herding. They are an important part of the identity of Bedlam Farm. So they serve many different purposes and I do love having them, seeing them, feeding them and the whole process that the wool goes though.

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