Frida Gets Clipped!
We had been discussing getting sheep again; what breed, how many, meat or wool... In fact we had been discussing it for so long, we are on our second herding dog (because we were going to get sheep) and neither had ever seen sheep. And then we had a call. "Do you want a pregnant ewe? She needs a home, NOW! Oh, and by the way, there is also a llama (a protector of the sheep) and they have to go together."
Our response: "Sure! ...Um, Llama?"
There were sudden health issues with the farmer/owners that required re-homing of the livestock at this farm. Most of the flock went to a different farm, except for the one that got away; the one that we now call "Frida" and her 2 sweet ewe lambs; Sunny and Shadow, who couldn't be caught on that moving day. Frida delivered the lambs easily in February at their farm, before we could prepare an area for her at our farm, in spite of having an excess of long wool that is usually sheared prior to lambing. When our fences were up and we were all ready, transporting them here went well. She seems very happy here. I think that it was meant to be.
The llama also found a different farm with other llamas to take him in in that time. I'll admit that after researching llamas, I learned that llamas protect sheep from coyotes by crushing them with their front knees and legs. I was not looking forward to introducing him to, or expecting any bonding with our dog, "Bandit"!
All 3 ewes have adjusted well to their new home and have especially taken to Mike. They are getting restless watching the grass turn green outside of their reach and we hope to have them out on pasture in the next week or so.
Meanwhile, it was a great load of wool (7+ lbs worth) off of Frida and fun to watch her get sheared by an expert sheep shearer. Seeing here response to that was also fun to watch as she leaped into the air and adjusted to her new body. The babies weren't sure that she was still their mom and were a bit distraught about loosing their snuggly mama's wool. But most importantly, we were happy to find a healthy ewe with no nutritional or other health issues under that heavy coat. Frida's next adventure will be weaning those hungry babies from her milk and then, lush green grass for the summer!