Notes from Windward: #68


Shearing Sheep

Orly describes team shearing our rams

     Spring is here and the weather is getting warmer which means its time to shear the sheep of their wool coat. About 2 weeks ago we (Walt, Annie, Opalyn, Monica, Eric, and I) sheared Chauser, the ram.

Eric, Orly and Annie console Chaucer

     We led Chauser into a small pen and onto a plywood platform. Walt grabbed his legs and put him on his side. The rest of us helped by holding down Chauser's arms, legs, and body. Chauser was pretty calm and patient for a while but it was nice having so many people to help since Chauser's patience definitely ran out before the clipping was done. The whole process took about and hour and 15 minutes.

Monica calms Chaucer by massaging his muzzle

     This past week we sheared two more sheep. The second sheep to be sheared was Chauser's son, Ram 2.0. This time the shearing team was composed of Walt, Annie, Monica, Jen, and I. Ram 2.0 was much harder to pin down and hold down. When we first led him into the pen he managed to bust open the gate and get out. After we finally got him laying on his side he managed to calm down a bit though every once in a while he would kick around and try to get up. Annie and Jen took turns petting his head and talking to him nicely to him to get him to relax.

lots of fresh wool to play with

     The third sheep was a ewe and this time I got to try my hand at shearing. I learned that it was much harder than it looks. For one thing, it's difficult to see where the wool starts and the skin ends, and I was nervous of hurting her. I handed the shears back after a few snips because at the rate I was going, we would have been there all night.

Notes From Windward - Index - Vol. 68