Archive for the ‘ram lambs’ Category

Flock for Sale

For Sale:  A Spinner’s Flock of Finnsheep, Shetland, and Bluefaced Leicester and Border Leicester X sheep – ewes, rams, lambs in black white, brown, gray, solid or spotted.  We have had a good run with the sheep but it is time to disburse the flock due to the desire to spend more “adventure” time away from the farm.

Our loss is your gain!  Perfect for a small farm or fiber flock, they are priced to go to new homes.  We are also taking reservation for grass-fed freezer lamb to be ready in October/November.

PHOTOS AND PEDIGREE INFO WILL BE UPLOADED TO THE FOR SALE PAGES.  Please leave a message or email roundaboutacres @ gmail DOT COM

 

EWES

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We have one white Shetland ewe who is an attentive, milky mother – singled, twinned, twinned  $125, not registered

We have two purebred,  registered Finnsheep ewes available.  Reese Emmi and LRO Kuuka.  Both are black with HST spotting, Kuuka carries brown.  $250 + transfer fee

 

RAMS

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We have a registered Finnsheep ram Knuut for sale for $250 plus FBA transfer fee.  He is gray with mild spotting, carries brown.  Pedigree information will be uploaded with his photo.  He is a mild-mannered ram, soft, crimpy fleece.  He has thrown more brown than black this year!  His lambs are white, black, brown, piebald and HST spotting.

Finnsheep/Shetland yearling ram William, brown with mild spotting $200.  He is a gentle boy with fabulous, crimpy, golden-brown fleece with a wonderful handle.  He sired Shetland Phyllis’ twin lambs this year.

Border Leicester X yearling ram Jasper.  He is mostly Border Leicester with some Columbia thrown in.  He was put on four BL X ewes who are lambing now.  $150

LAMBS

Shetland X twins - black ram and white ewe lambs

Shetland X twins – black ram and white ewe lamb

 

Purebred Finn lambs $250 + transfer and registration fees

Finn/Shetland/BFL X lambs and Border Leicester X lambs $150

We are offering a Starter Flock of two unrelated Finn X or BL X  ewes lambs and a ram lamb for $425.

Baa, Baa Grey (?) Sheep

Our new Finnsheep ram lamb is from Gail VonBargen of  Little Red Oak Farm.  His mother is black piebald (wildly spotted) and sire is brown. So he BBBb with spots.  Or so we thought…  Last Saturday, as Knuut was being sheared, his fiber fell aside to reveal a beautiful silver grey.  Finnsheep genetics are not as well understood as Shetland genetics, but Shetland breeders would call this type of change “modified.”   I think it is beautiful, whatever it is called.

Finn ram Knuut

Finn ram Knuut

Fleeces

On Sunday, daughter-in-law Ashley helped me skirt 21 fleeces.  This is our first year shearing in autumn.  We will always shear twice annually from now on!  The fleeces were very clean and the six-month old lamb fleeces are luscious!  I am working on a Roundaboutacres Sales blog and will get photos and prices of sale fleeces online in the next few days.  In the meantime, here a few photos.

Bluefaced Leicester/Shetland Mulesheep Sasha

Finn/Shetland ram lamb

Shearing Day – Fleeces available!

Shearing Day!

Saturday is shearing day on the farm.  We are trying something new this year – we will shear in the fall and again in spring.  Many Finnsheep shepherds shear their sheep twice annually.  The fall clip is clean because the sheep have been on pasture with no hay to contaminate the fleece.  I have also noticed that with the Shetlands and the Shetland/BFL cross sheep, the staple is VERY long when sheared annually; at times it has been too long for the fiber mill.

Fleeces are available from $9-$16 per pound plus shipping.  Please email roundaboutacres AT gmail DOT com

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Breeding Groups

We have two breeding groups this year.  Our new Finn ram lamb is Little Red Oak Knuut.  He is BBBb (black, carries brown) with spots.  His mother is piebald.  On Oct. 7th, he was introduced to ten ewes and ewe lambs and everything appears to be going well.

The second breeding group consists of four ewe lambs and a ram lamb which we brought home from northern Minnesota.  They are Border Leicester crosses.  The ram is 3/4 BL, the ewes are Border Leicester,  BL/Columbia, or BL/Karakul crosses.  I am really curious to see what we get from this group.  We are hoping for lambs with a bit more size.

And I had to include this humorous photo of a ewe lamb who didn’t want to go into the breeding pen.  She flopped… and then she flipped.  Enjoy!

Spring is in the Air

Shetland Bonnie with her 1/2 Finn 1/2 Shetland Lambs

It’s a warmer spring  day today.  Finally!  I promised more photos so I will keep the text brief.  Above, is two-year old Shetland Bonnie with her 50% Finn lambs.  The ewe lamb on the left has pretty white markings in her lighter brown fleece and her brother is a rich, dark chocolate-brown.  This is Bonnie’s first lambing and I am pleased to report that she is an attentive and excellent mother.

Spotted badgerface Finn ram lamb 2011

Above is the gray Finn ram lamb sneaking a drink of milk from Bonnie.  This boys mom, Finnsheep Little Red Oak Kiia, has been a reluctant new mother.  I have kept a close watch on them – she doesn’t let him nurse for long.  I’ve felt his teeth and they don’t feel sharp.  And Kiia’s bag feels normal so he is getting milk from her.  I will keep monitoring them and supplement bottle-feed him through the fence, if needed.

Australian Shepherd Molly with her pups

Our Australian Shepherd, Molly, whelped 7 puppies on Friday.  Border Collie Gus is the father.  Shepherd George was in attendance for the births while I was at work.  Molly needed no help; she and the three females and four males are doing well.  We weighed them today and all are gaining weight.   Molly is tricolor and Gus is red so we will see how the colors develop.  The pup at the top of the photo is lighter than the rest – I hope that pup will be red.  I know nothing about dog color genetics and I decided I don’t care to learn.  We don’t plan on breeding dogs in the future.  We did want one breeding from these two because they are both great farm dogs.  We were hoping to wait until the end of the year but Gus had different ideas.  (A brief lapse in judgment by this Shepherd  aided in his access to Molly.)

Two-day old Aussie/Border Collie pups

Spring Update – More Lambs!

It’s been a cold, wet, spring.  Yesterday we woke up to a dusting of snow on the ground and the day was frigid and blustery with intermittent sleet.  This year, the ewes have lambed when there has been a significant weather change; I wasn’t surprised to find Shetland Bonnie in labor.  She got my attention by loudly baahing.  That was unusual because she hardly ever makes noise.  I could see lamb hooves and legs but she wasn’t pushing.  We went outside to see what we could do to help.  Trophy Husband held her head and soothed her while I was at the business end.  I wasn’t sure if the lamb was alive or dead, but I held lamb legs while she pushed.  The lamb’s head was crowning and Bonnie just needed a bit of encouragement to push more.  I gently pulled while she grunted, loudly complained and pushed.  I helped ease his head out and after a few more pushes she delivered a live brown ram lamb!  I cleaned his face immediately as mom started cleaning him.  Within a few minutes she delivered a spotted brown ewe lamb.  After cleaning her face, I sat back and observed the new mom with her babes.  Everyone looked fine, both lambs were up and nursing within a short time.  After “snip, dip and strip,” the lambs were dressed in warm fleece jackets.

I couldn’t get a good photo but here is a sneak peek.  These lambs are 50% Shetland 50% Finnsheep.  I absolutely love the moorit coloring and both parents have wonderful fleece so I have great hopes for these two lambs.  The ewe lamb, on the right, already has very curly locks and her HST markings are lovely!

2011 Twin ram and ewe lambs (Shetland RA Bonnie X Finnsheep LRO Eino)

Shetland Bonnie (born 2009) will be for sale after weaning her lambs.  She is a sturdy, quiet sheep who is quickly becoming fond of animal crackers.

Shetland Bonnie in full fleece. Born in 2009, she is moorit and carries spots. She will be for sale after weaning her lambs.

Our First Gray Lamb!

Last week, April 6th, our most stunning lamb of the season was born to Little Red Oak Kiia.  She is a first time mom who birthed a single ram lamb, no help needed.  Kiia was bred to Stillmeadow Toivo, a gray badgerface ram with a finely crimped fleece.  I arrived home from work to find this little guy dried off and standing next to his dam.  His weight was 6 lbs. 4 oz.  He is exactly what I was hoping for!  However, now that we are decreasing our flock, he will be for sale.  His facial markings are piebald; I think his body markings may be “light badgerface.”  The black does not go all the way to his chin and he has white markings on/underneath his tail.  Elizabeth from Stillmeadow Finnsheep, any thoughts??  Again, I will post better pics in the next post.

2011 Single Finnsheep ram lamb. He is a gray, piebald ram lamb.

2011 Finnsheep ram lamb

Look at that fleece!

For Sale

And as a last note, brown Finnsheep ram Little Red Oak Eino is for sale.  He is a two-year old, extremely mild-mannered ram who throws spots.  His fleece is soft, lustrous and lovely; it spins like a dream.  He is very easy to handle and walks well on a leash.  Please leave a message for more info. and recent photos.

Shetland Bonnie will be for sale after weaning her lambs.

Finnsheep gray piebald ram lamb will be for sale after weaning.  It will be hard to let him go as I really wanted a gray sheep on our farm!

We will have more sheep for sale during the summer.  I am waiting for lamb weaning to make the final decision on who will stay in our small flock.

Friday Farm Photo #7 – A Tough Summer

Finnsheep: ram lamb Esko (white), ewe lambs Katariina (black) and Leila (brown)

The Farm Photos today are not happy photos.  The above photo shows two lambs with bottle jaw.  You can see a swelling below the jaw of Esko and Katariina. From what I have learned, bottle jaw is the result of a high worm load, especially of the barber pole worm (Haemonchus contortis.)  This nasty worm attaches to the lining of the host’s intestine and sucks blood from its victim, resulting in anemia.  The protein loss leads to third-spacing of fluid and bottle jaw.  Once the sheep gets to this point it is a crisis – life threatening.

I discovered Esko after I found his twin Erno dead.  Erno had no signs of problems except for some scouring (diarrhea) two weeks earlier.  I treated him with wormer and he seemed to recover.  And due to the high temperatures, humidity and our rainy summer, I also treated the flock and llamas with a coccidiostat.  The treatment goes into their water for five days.

I was very upset when I found Erno.  We have not had lambs die on our farm and he was the second this year.  I know it happens and is part of being a shepherd but, still, I felt like I was doing something wrong.  I inspected the flock and discovered the mucous membranes around Esko’s eyes were WHITE and his jaw was swollen.  Katariina’s eyes were also white and she had a small swelling under her chin.   I could not believe that I had not noticed sooner!  Feeling very incompetent – (how could I miss those puffy chins?) – I separated them from the flock, along with Leila, whose eyes were a very pale pink.  I wormed them with a different wormer and have fed a high-quality grass/alfalfa hay.

In the past, we have been able to worm the sheep several times a year and support flock health.  This year has been different.  The weather have made it tough to keep up as the worms thrive in hot, humid, moist weather.  Unfortunately, the old barn on our property was built on the lowest area so it tends to hold the moisture.  And moisture encourages grass growth, which is good for the parasites.  Upon reflection, we probably need to make some changes so the flock is able to stay out on pasture during the summer.  As it is now, they may return to the barnyard at will.

It’s been a tough summer and we have been on a steep learning curve as new shepherds.  We lost Katariina a few days ago.  So we have lost three lambs – all Finnsheep.  This is a new breed for us, but I don’t think it is the breed.  I think we are having problems because we are novice shepherds facing a new challenge.  I have to believe it is our management that is at fault.  I am reviewing the worming schedule, pasture rotation and general housing/management.  I will keep you posted.

Finn lamb Katariina with swelling under her chin.

Bad Boys, Bad Boys! (What ya gonna do?)

It’s jail for our Bad Boys!  I guess I should say they are just doing what nature intended…  My plan was to remove the ram lambs in a few more weeks but a few of our ram lambs have different ideas.  The new Finn ram lamb was lovin’ up every ewe in the barnyard.  They just ran away from him but I don’t want to take any chances.  So I put him in a pen with BFL – NC Cheviot cross Tank who was also friendly with the girls.  I will get them set up on their own pasture.

I have decided to name our new ram Toivo, which means “hope.”  I have big dreams for this Finn ram so the name is fitting.  Also, coming from northern Minnesota and being Finnish myself, I grew up with the name – even if it was used a lot in jokes!

While The Shepherdess (Cop) was throwing the boys in the brink, I noticed this pumpkin plant growing along the fence line.  I wonder how long the sheep will let this grow?  It must have planted itself from a pumpkin I fed the sheep last winter!

This photo is of our newest Finn ewe lamb from Gale Woods Farm.  I have decided to call her Saara.  She is a calm, friendly, very feminine lamb who is white with light brownish gray legs and white boots on her rear legs.  She is a twin but her sibling died at birth; consequently, she got all the milk so she is a very good size – she must weigh at least 50 lbs.  I need to get a larger sling to weigh the lambs as they get larger.

Saara’s fleece is white to the roots.  Her legs are both brown and gray; she has brown and black in her background so time will tell what her base genetics are.

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