Archive for the ‘spots’ 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



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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



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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


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.

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.

A Visit to Finn Land

It has been raining non-stop since the beginning of June.  I’m trying not to complain… we need the rain… but the barnyard is saturated, mushrooms are sprouting, and the gray is depressing.  So I was happy to spend a bit of time away from the farm.  And what did I do on the day spent away from the farm?  Go shopping at the Mall of America?  Get a relaxing massage and pedicure at the spa?  Um, no.  I did what any crazed shepherdess would do – I visited another farm.  Oh dear, I just realized that I visited two farms!

Gail Von Bargen emailed last week to let me know she and a fiber friend, Candy, were going to Gale Woods Farm to look at the 2010 crop of  Finnsheep lambs.  Did I want to meet up with them?  You betcha, I wanted to go!  I had already decided to purchase two to three more Finn ewe lambs this year for our flock.  I wanted to see Gale Woods’ lambs and I’ve picked out two from Gail’s lamb crop so this would give me the chance to see them also.

It was raining as I drove but I still enjoyed listening to several episodes of Craftlit.  I met up with Gail and Candy at Detta’s Spindle where Candy was buying a spinning wheel.  I had never met Detta or been to her store before so that was a nice treat.  Then we had lunch and went to Gale Woods Farm.  Farm Manager Tim Reese has a mixed flock of Clun Forest and Finnsheep, with some Border Leicester and Icelandic mixed in.  Within a few moments of entering the pasture, Gail and I set our eyes upon a lovely ewe lamb who looked like she may have modified or Ag genetics.  (Forgive me, but I am still learning the genetics.)

2010 Finn ewe lamb at Gale Woods Farm.

Tim said they considered her gray due to her leg coloring at birth.  Gray?  She looks white, yet not white…  Gray in Finns ranges from nearly white to a dark, steely gray.  She has good confirmation, a sweet personality, and her fiber looked lovely.  Her spotted face appears “washed out” or diluted.  Gail and I pondered if she could be Ag?  Modified? Gail is much further along in a comprehension of genetics than I; but we agreed that this lamb looked to have whatever genes are at work in Finns that lightens the fleece.  Time will tell.  I placed a deposit to hold the ewe lamb.

Look at her precious face!  I will bring her home when I pick up the other two lambs from Gail.  You can click on any photo to “biggify.”

Little Red Oak Finn ram lamb (L) and Finn ewe lamb Leila (R)

We ended the day back at Gail’s farm which was full of bouncing Shetland and Finn lambs.  These brown Finns are brother (spotty) and sister.  I will bring home the ewe on the right.  Her fleece is very, very dense and curly and she likes chin scratches.

2010 Little Red Oak Finn ewe lamb

And finally, here is a photo of Kimi’s ewe lamb.  Gail’s daughter Emily is holding her.  Her dam Kimi can be seen on the right.  Her fleece became gray before she reached one year old.  This ewe lamb has silky soft fiber with very little crimp at this time.  It will be interesting to see how her fiber grows in.  She has HST spots and maybe, maybe will give us some gray??

Sheep Sales – Prices Reduced on Ewes

In the last three weeks, about half of our sale sheep have gone to good homes!  We have reduced the price on several of our ewes. Please click on the Ewe Sales Page to see what we have for sale.

Shetland yearling ewe Bonnie has a lovely, moorit single coated fleece.

We still have three Finn ram lambs available, two white and one black, with spotting and the rare brown color genetics.  Finnsheep are a gentle and easily managed breed.  By adding a Finn ram to your flock, you will see an increase in lambing rate as well as adding qualities of luster and crimp to your flock’s wool!

Finn ram lamb Esko after I removed his fleece jacket. (LRO Eino X Gale Woods Elina) He carries spots and brown. Awt/Aa B?/Bb S?/Ss

Finnsheep single ram lamb is spotted and carries brown. Aa/Aa BB/Bb Ss/Ss

Also available, with regrets, is our Bluefaced Leicester ram Dougal.  He has sired many lambs for us over the last few years.  Very easy to handle, he is a gentle ram with excellent, shiny, purly BFL fiber.

Finnsheep ram lamb Little Red Oak Eino and Bluefaced Leicester ram Dougal

Please click on our Sales Pages to see what sheep are still available.  If you don’t like our prices, please make an offer.  All offers will be considered.

Lamb Photos – Can We Ever Get Enough??

I love looking at lamb photos!  Today I will share some recent shots of our adorable lambs, mostly Finns.  Enjoy!

Finnsheep trip. ewe lamb Eeva

Eeva is no longer receiving a supplemental bottle.  She is a very friendly ewe lamb who runs up to me anytime she sees me.  She loves her chin scratches!  This photo clearly illustrates the color difference between the brown hair on her head, face and legs and the lighter brown of her fleece.  Her fleece color is consistent from tip to root.  I’m not sure of modified colors in Finns yet.  When I compare her color to her sire Eino, she is much lighter; I wonder if she carries a modifier gene and is a fawn color?  It will be fun to watch her color as she grows and I’m anxious to see what she will pass onto her lambs.  I have read on several websites that brown Finn lambs are less than 2% of the Finn population.  I don’t know if this is true and I am looking for a report that verifies this.  When/if I find that information, I will pass it on to you.  I am going to concentrate somewhat on the brown color, not just because it is rare but because I love it in it’s natural state and I’m anxious to try some overdyeing!

Finnsheep trip. ram/whether lamb Esko (For Sale)

This photo was taken right after I removed his fleece jacket.  He is growing nicely and looks to have nice fiber and confirmation.  He is FOR SALE as a breeding ram or he could be whethered.  He carries BROWN and spots.

Finnsheep single ram lamb is spotted and carries brown (Aa/Aa BB/Bb Ss/Ss)

I still haven’t committed to a name for this black Finn ram lamb.  He is growing nicely, is respectfully curious but not overly so, just as a ram should be.  He is spotted black and carries brown and is FOR SALE.

Shetland twin ewe lamb Phyllis loves her chin scratches!

Shetland ewe lamb Phyllis is the one that I had to help deliver.  She and her brother Curly are very friendly; she also runs up to me and waits for a chin scratch.  Her fiber is coming in with a consistent wave – it doesn’t look very crimpy at this point.  Her dam and sire both have great fiber so I’m sure she will.  She will be one of the few Shetlands we keep on our farm.

Finnsheep triplet lambs with shetland mule ram lamb in the background.

Finnsheep lamb Eeva (Aa/Aa Bb/Bb Ss/Ss)

And finally, another photo of Finn lamb Eeva.  Three of her four feet are spotted white and she has the white spotting on her head.  She does not have spotting on her tail.  To me, this is the same type of spotting that Shetland breeder Nancy Krohn defined as HST (Head, Socks, Tail) spotting in Shetlands.  Nancy’s thoughts on the subject may be found here.

Sheep Color Genetics – Links

I want to begin this post by saying that I am in no way an expert on genetics! I have the rudimentary knowledge that one gains from several college biology courses.  I am just learning how to classify my sheep’s genetics.  In my quest to discover more about sheep color genetics, I have found a wealth of information on the internet published by Shetland, Gotland, Icelandic, Finn and other sheep breeders.  I will include the sites on the Links page.

The first link is by Shetland breeder Lanette Scapillatto – Color Genetics of Icelandic, Shetland, and Finnsheep.  This information is based on work by Stefan Adalsteinsson, PhD in 1970 and the World Congress of Coloured Sheep in 1989.  Click on the site for specifics.  The information on this site is clearly presented.

The next link is the fantastic information on color genetics presented by Shetland breeders, Linda Wendelboe and Kathy Baker.  In addition to genetics information, their site has a wealth of information and photos on the Shetland breed, patterns, fiber, etc.

At Tongue River Farm, Susan Mongold raises Icelandic sheep.  She wrote an article on  Color Genetics in Icelandic Sheep.  Her article was published in The Shepherd Magazine in June 1997.

Franna Pitt, PhD raises Shetlands and Gotland sheep at Ever Ranch.  She has published a detailed paper entitled Colored Genetics of Gotland Sheep in North America.  I have only begun to study this paper and it is excellent.

Franna’s paper pointed me to Deer Run Sheep Farm‘s website which has a paper written by D. Phillip Sponenberg, DVM, PhD, on Color Genetics in Coopworth Sheep.  Even if you are not interested in genetics, check out this website because it is packed full of fiber, farm and website design related links!  A big thank-you to the Martha and Jim McGrath for their fabulous site!

And finally, Yahoo has a group on sheep color genetics.  There are frequent and interesting discussions on color genetics of various breeds of sheep on this Yahoo group.

The Finn lambs are growing nicely and starting to fill out their jackets.

Based on what I have gleaned from this genetic information, I would list triplet Finnsheep ewe lamb Eeva (left) as Aa/Aa Bb/Bb Ss/Ss.  Underneath their jackets, both lambs are solid color.  Her ram lamb brother (on right with dirt on his head) is all white from a spot carrying brown sire and spot carrying white dam.  If that was the only information I had, along with knowing that white is a pattern, I would list him as Awt/A? B?/Bb S?/Ss.  Comments from the more experienced shepherds are welcome!

I hope you find these links as informative as I did.  In one of my upcoming posts, I will list the rationale for the genetics of our Finn lambs.  In the meantime, we are in the midst of a lovely Minnesota day!  I have a vegetable garden to work on and lambs to be whethered and vaccinated.  Have a great day!

It’s a Green May Day in Minnesota!

Finnsheep Elina walks with her triplets

Green Grass

The pastures are greening up yet not quite ready for the flock/herd.  This is the time of year when the animals get antsy.  The llamas, in particular, become annoyed when they can see the grass growing and are not let out onto it.  To prevent the llamas from jumping the fence, I let them out onto some grass growing right outside the barnyard.

The ewes got the choice grass in our back yard.  Unfortunately, that meant Gus had to stay on the porch while they grazed.  His herding genes were screaming as he sat and watched!

Gus loves to watch the lambs in the nursery. I made him stay on the porch when we let the moms and lambs into the back yard. Gus was very, very sad while he waited on the porch.

Moms and lambs enjoyed a few hours on the green grass and went back into the nursery.  The older lambs enjoyed their lamb races but the Finn lambs stuck closer to mama.  It won’t be long and they will be joining in the races.  This photo shows how fast the lambs grow.  The Shetlands were our first-born on April 1st.  They look huge compared to the Finn lambs born three weeks later.

Finnsheep ewe lamb Eeva and one of her brothers - growing but the still small! Shetlands Phyllis and Curly were born 21 days before the Finn lambs.

Finns For Sale

Below is a photo of Finnsheep Emmi’s single ram lamb.  He has excellent confirmation and his fiber is coming in nicely.  I still haven’t named him.  He is FOR SALE.  His sire is Little Red Oak Eino, a single brown Finn.  His dam is Gale Woods Emmi, a black spotted ewe.  I will post more detailed pedigree info. on the Sale Page.

Finnsheep ram lamb enjoying the grass (For Sale)

Finnsheep triplet ram lamb Esko is also FOR SALE.  I will update the Sale Page soon with information on him.

Finnsheep triplets Eeva (in red) and Esko (in blue.) Esko is FOR SALE.

Pretty Girls

And finally, I just have to post a few more pics of the 3/4 Bluefaced Leicester girls.  They are all so pretty!  I love their faces, ears, curly wool, long legs and loooong torso.

3/4 Bluefaced Leicester ewe lambs

A sweet 3/4 Bluefaced Leicester ewe lamb.

Nugget’s Lambs – Adorable!

Shetland ewe Nugget is a great sheep.  She is steady, friendly, inquisitive – but not pushy – and always gives us nice lambs.  Her musket (oatmeal brown) fleece is soft with a lovely crimp; and she has a nice size frame which can carry Mulesheep easily.  For three years in a row the has had twins, a ewe and ram lamb.  Nugget imparts her lovely crimp and steady personality to her sheep.

Just after midnight on 4/16/10 I discovered Nugget cleaning off her lambs.  The ram lamb was very clean so he must have been born first.  He was already hopping around while Nugget licked off the ewe lamb.  I grabbed my lamb slings, plopped the lambs in them and led Nugget into a lambing jug.  I was thankful I already had the lambing jug ready with everything except molasses water.  I weighed each lamb and snipped, dipped, stripped and made sure that both lambs sipped from mama’s milk jug.

Nugget was bred to BFL Dougal so these lambs are Mulesheep lambs.  They both have tight, curly, shiny fiber.  And they have such cute markings!

2010 Mulesheep (Shetland Nugget X BFL Dougal) twin ewe lamb. 7lb. 12oz. birthweight.

2010 Shetland ewe Nugget with twin ewe lamb (sipping) and ram lamb (lying down)

2010 Mulesheep twin lambs. Ewe lamb (left) has brown ears and feet. Ram lamb (right) has black eyes, nose, ears and feet; he also has a few random black spots on this body. The ram lamb weighed 9lb. 14 oz. at birth. They are both so cute! I think I will name them Boots and Betsy.

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