In further streamlining-the-farm news, Mr. Cotswold, Miss Cotswold, Miss Jacob, Rhett, and Sailor (you can barely see them back there behind the sheep) drove away in this camper today.
Reasons: I have posted before about my experiences with and fear of Mr. Cotswold, who can be quite aggressive, and he is also a quite large ram. I consider him semi-dangerous. (Yes, the takers of Mr. Cotswold were informed of this as well as everything else we know about these sheep.) Miss Cotswold has never had a baby in all the time we’ve had her, so I think she’s barren. Miss Jacob is a regular annual producer, however, as much as in some ways I enjoy and appreciate Jacob sheep, they are slight of build and not the best meat sheep. They have over and over produced slightly built lambs who never take after Mr. Cotswold. She’s also getting up there in years, and I certainly didn’t want her to be left out when the others moved. The ever-entertaining Jester, our other Jacob ewe, died last year, of old age, and the other Miss Cotswold (who was also barren) died of mysterious causes. Mr. Cotswold, the remaining Miss Cotswold, and Miss Jacob are the last of our original flock, and I wanted them to go together. We’ve had little luck selling fleece for much of anything, and with the rampant mowing that sheep can do, we don’t have adequate pasture to keep up. Their new family has twice the pasture we do, so it’s a happy move for them–and a relief on our inadequate pasture.
We still have Annabelle, Minnie Belle, Miss Crazy Jacob (a Cotswold-Jacob cross), and her Crazy Lamb. I will keep Annabelle and Minnie Belle forever as two pet sheep! However, Miss Crazy and Crazy Baby will be leaving in the spring.
Will I ever get another ram for Annabelle and Minnie Belle? I might….. But I don’t need one right now, and for now, I’m thrilled to be ram-free and not afraid to enter any field on the farm.
I was also excited to send Rhett and Sailor, my two remaining Nigerian Dwarf bucks, to a good home with many fields of green.
Do I plan to send off any other animals? Nope. Love my cows. Love my donkeys. Love my two pet sheep. Love my streamlined goat herd. Love my chickens and my one goose. This is the streamlining I’ve been pondering for some time, the start of which was streamlining to breeding Fainters and Fainter crosses only in the goat yard with one buck. Pruning down the sheep to my pets Annabelle and Minnie Belle is the finish. Whew. MUCH BETTER!!!! Sometimes you have to learn by experience just what is manageable on your farm, what your pasture will support, and what you can handle.
I think you have made a good decision here. I don’t want to own any animal I am afraid of. Streamlined…I like it! :happyflower:
On August 21, 2011 at 5:20 pm
Whoa! Congratulations. Looks like you’ve placed an efficiency template over your farm. You’ll be much better able to concentrate on cheese and other things closer to your goals. (Boy doesn’t THAT sound officious!)
On August 21, 2011 at 6:25 pm
Ramona Slocum says:
At one time we had a ram I was afraid of. I never went into the pasture to feed them without a hammer. I wasn’t sad to see him go.
MN Mona :sheep:
On August 21, 2011 at 6:34 pm
I find this really funny . you get rid of your aggresive ram and I go and buy another . You could always send the Belles off to meet a nice ram for a month or so.
On August 21, 2011 at 6:40 pm
Sad, but necessary part of farm life. And freeing, like giving away stuff. The little buggers should be happy that the camp they went to wasn’t that “freezer camp” I hear mentioned on here so often.
On August 21, 2011 at 8:22 pm
Sounds like farm management to me. Funny, you become more of a farmer by becoming less of a farmer. Making hard choices. Those chore boots are fitting you better and better.
On August 21, 2011 at 8:22 pm
Liz Pike says:
Oh yes! Been there, done that, and many times that’s what it takes, the actual doing, to get an idea of what you want! I’m sure the farm feels “free-er”, and the pastures happier!
On August 21, 2011 at 9:15 pm
I am glad to help with your downsizing. Take good care of my babies till I can come get them. I am so excited to get Peanut and Coal! :snoopy:
On August 21, 2011 at 9:30 pm
Sheila Z says:
The remaining livestock is celebrating and singing, “More grass for me!
On August 22, 2011 at 1:37 am
I will miss hearing about these guys, also about Miss Crazy and her baby when they go. But I understand why you are doing it. I think I need to downsize on my pets 🙁 Its getting so hard to look after them all. I’m glad they are off to a good home!
On August 22, 2011 at 3:39 am
Glad you were able to find good homes for everyone. That has to make it a little easier on your mind. I’m sure your pasture is breathing a sigh of relief too. Maybe your sheepy ladies can go visiting like BP did. You wouldn’t need to go milk them during their visit either!
On August 22, 2011 at 10:18 am
Angela P says:
Thank you for this post. Sometimes its hard to make the adjustment to “streamline’ but oh so necessary. I recently did the same. I had a goat buck that was just plain mean and dangerous. He is gone! At first you feel bad, sad and for some reason I felt like I had failed. All those feelings past after reading this. Thanks Suzanne. Good choice!
On August 22, 2011 at 1:57 pm
yes, this sounds like a good solid management decision Suzanne. I’m a firm believer in “less is more” etc. too much and it’s overwhelming and no one is happy. stick to what you now know you can support and you’re being wise. good job! sad to see some of the Stringtown Rising Farm characters go, but it’s for the best it seems. :hug: :hug: :hug:
On August 22, 2011 at 3:32 pm