Tuesday, July 11, 2017

The Animals of Opportunity Farm - Sheep

The Sheep

The only animals that were on Opportunity Farm when we arrived were a flock of hand-reared Wiltshire Horn sheep. These sheep are hardy and will tolerate poorer pasture, rarely need assistance with birthing and do not require any shearing or crutching.
As we increased the number of other animals on the farm, our flock of Wiltshire Horns has diminished to 12. We currently have one young ram, a wether that has somehow survived the freezer, eight ewes and two lambs.
We also have four other sheep:
Shaun, a Dorset wether who was a poddy whose owners couldn't eat him or look after him and begged us to give him a home. He is large and very friendly and will follow you anywhere if he thinks you have food.
Daisy, a merino coloured sheep who looks like a cow rather than a sheep. She was also a poddied pet and is very friendly. She seems to be barren as she has never had a lamb.
Gerald and Henry are a pair of Corriedale coloured wethers. They are both chocolate in colour and are designed for Michelle to spin their wool. They were brought to Opportunity Farm late in 2016 and the trauma of the journey has made Gerald's fleece snap at that point so currently he is moulting. Henry (named for Henry Lawson) is more confident and hangs out with Daisy and Shaun. Gerald (named for Gerald Durrell) tends to hang near the back with the more anxious sheep.
All the sheep come running when some sheep nuts are shaken and queue up each morning in winter for their lucerne biscuits and nuts.

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