Sunday, November 21, 2010

The boys are back in town.

Once again I am behind on my postings, but you are probably getting used to that by now. We have had quite a bit going on and I have been feeling a bit overwhelmed. I won't bore you with the details, but I am going to use it as justification for my lack of blogginess : ).

As you may have gathered from the "Lamb Watch" gadget on the right side of the blog, breeding groups were put together last weekend. I started out this fall with only one ram available for breeding- Sommarang Gilroy, who I used for breeding last year. He is an awesome ram. Great conformation, good horns, fabulous fleece that microned last fall at 20.7, AND he is spotted. I am repeating some of those same breedings, but I have several ewes that are related to Gilroy, so I needed at least one other ram to diversify my flock genetics. After searching much of the fall for new rams with no luck, I ended up with FOUR boys here for breeding quite unexpectedly. So, here is the fall line-up and introductions. I am still waiting on some micron reports and will probably post them on a separate page on this blog in the interest of sparing my non-sheepy readers the monotony of having to read a bunch of seemingly nonsensical numbers.
Gilroy and his lovely ladies.
Daisy. Although Daisy is single-coated, her fleece microned very high (30) but when paired with Gilroy last year she produced two nicely fleeced ram lambs.
Willow. Willow is my only Ag (grey) ewe. I generally don't keep any Ag in my flock, but she has awesome conformation and she is one of my favorite ewes. Willow carries spots and solid as well.
Gilroy's last mystery date is Mira. I love, love, love this ewe. She is dainty, feminine and super friendly. I was not planning on breeding her last year, but she took matters into her own hands and jumped two fences...twice, to get to Gilroy...little hussy! That breeding resulted in a beautiful gulmoget ewe with delicious fleece, so I am hoping for more of the same in the spring.
Much to his dismay, my old wether (castrated ram), Rocky, has also become the object of Gilroy's affection....poor Rocky...I think he needs to change his perfume.
Below we have Hero. I got Hero from a fellow Shetland breeder that was dispersing her flock. I love his smaller size, wide horns, square conformation....and his spots. Hero has nice, soft fleece but he is dual-coated which is not what I breed for....not that there's anything wrong with that, I just prefer the single-coated fleece, he does have a lot of really nice qualities, so  I decided to give him two ewes with very fine, single-coated fleece to see if I can get some lambs with great conformation and fleece.

Hero's two lady-loves~
Holly is a very fine-fleece katmoget ewe with beautiful conformation. Holly carries polled genetics, so I am pairing her with Hero since he carries no polled lines and has nice, wide horns.

 Menemsha is bachelorette #2. She is a lovely mioget girl and I hope that I get some nice modified lambs from her. 

Next we have Avyt and his harem. Mr. "A", as we call him...mainly because I have no idea how to pronounce his name, is a bit camera shy so he is standing in the background in most of the pictures. Poor guy lost a horn before he got here in a ram scuffle through a fence. I was very lucky to be able to lease this boy for breeding. Here is his fleece. Yup, you might want to biggify this picture!
He has a high percentage of UK genetics and also has outstanding conformation and he is spotted. This guy is yummy!
Here are his 7 luscious ladies. Luna decided to bedazzle herself with pieces of straw...I told her it wasn't the best look for her.
 All of these ewes are spotted or carry spots.
 So there will be lots of nicely-fleeced spotted lambs in the spring.
 I am especially excited to see what Luna (below) has in the spring. This will be her first lambing and I love the look of this girl. She is standing funny in this picture, but her conformation is very nice.
 I would love to get a spotted moorit gulmoget out of Halley (below). She had a solid ewe lamb last spring, but she does carry spots, so hopefully I will get something more flashy this time around.

Lastly we have...ummmm, 'new guy'. He doesn't have a name yet. I kind of fell in love with this guy because of his nice wide horns. Although I do like fully polled ( hornless) Shetlands, that is not what I am breeding for and I have a couple of ewes that carry polled genetics, so I am pairing him with one of those girls hoping that the lamb(s) might inherit his lovely full-horn genetics. He is a very masculine looking ram and is quite a contrast to Hero's smaller size and....well, cuteness ( technical sheepy terminology). He also has a decent percentage of UK genetics.

New guy's fleece.

He will be paired with Edrea.

" Mmmmmmm, she's pretty!"
I am breeding waaay more ewes this year than I normally do, but I already have a waiting list, so if you are interested in any spring lambs please contact me so that you can get on the list. Also, Hero will be for sale after breeding, only because I don't normally keep a bunch of rams.


The Little Red Hen said...

your sheep are so beautiful Corrine. Its no wonder you have a waiting list.

Michelle said...

Corinne, what you NEED to do is send those lovely poll-carrier ladies out to ME! Because you know that no matter HOW impressive the ram's horns are, Miss Poll-Carrier will throw a poll gene (I'm assuming you only have half-polls) 50% of the time, and the gene Mr. Impressive Horn contributes can't "override" it!

Nancy K. said...

What a stunningly beautiful flock you have developed, Corinne! Your careful selection for fine fleeces and good conformation in a spotted Shetland is REALLY paying off! I am SO glad that you're NOT breeding for polled! It's nice to have access to Shetlands with fine fleece and beautiful horns! Thank you for all of the hard work you've put into your flock. I'll be wanting a ram from you in the future...

Crosswinds Farm said...

Thanks Cathy!

Michelle, I can't send those girlies to you because, of course, they are some of my best ewes ; ). Yes, they are both Half-polls, so I am going to take a chance on getting some full-horned lambies out of them. I decided to play around with some genetics this year since I had such a diverse group of boys to use. If it all goes badly I may be sending you a whole bunch of lambies! LOL.

Thanks, Nancy. I am hoping to have a nice HST boy for you...I know what you mean about not wanting to keep mature rams, that is why I am thinking I will offer some of these boys after breeding, or with starter flocks in the spring.

Michelle said...

The problem with the lambies, Corinne, is that only the little boys reveal (usually) their horn genetics early on and at this point and for the foreseeable future, I'm set on boys! Your proven poll-carrier girls are welcome to become MY best ewes.... ;-)

Verde Farm said...

They are all beautiful! I am new to sheep and know almost nothing. I bought two wethers from Nancy K and they are gorgeous to us. Your spotted are amazing. I just love them!

Tammy said...

I especially like "new guy"! Those horns are awesome. What color is he registered as? Just never seen one so shimmery red with those blackish (dark) points. Looks like you are going to have fields of lovely lambs this spring!

Teresa said...

They are all so beautiful! I know nothing about sheep or fleece, though. I must say, most people I know covet those polled genetics (cows/goats). Is there a specific reason you prefer horns?

tbsomeday said...

they are all beautiful...i can't wait to see the million lambs you will have this spring :)

Anonymous said...

I'm so glad I'm on "the list" for next year. Hero looks so cute. The new guy is a gorgeous color. Is he my baby's daddy or is the guy with the long legs in the photo with Halley the one? : )

Crosswinds Farm said...

Amy, Welcome to the world of Shetlands! I hope you have lots of land because Shetlands are addictive!

Tammy, the new guy is moorit, but he is an interesting shade. I love the horns too....I may not like them as well once he matures and wants to remodel my barn though : ).

Teresa, I like polled rams too, but I think there is something so beautiful about a Shetland ram with nice, wide spiral horns.

Tabitha, it won't quite be millions, but there will be an aweful lot of lambies here in the spring!

Cassie, I am not sure who your baby daddy will be...or your baby momma. My mioget ewe is in with Hero, I know that is the color that you are after, so if she has a lambie with her gorgeous fleece they will be your baby-birth-parents. Gilroy also carries modified colors so one of his girls may have something for you.......also many of my girls that are in with Mr. A are modified. Mr. A is not as leggy as you might think-he was sheared late because he was destined for the freezer before Lori rescued him! YIKES! You are first on the list for a mioget lambie : ).

Karen Anne said...

UK = United Kingdom? :-)

Lucky Mr. A!!

Anonymous said...

Acutally, the long-legged guy I was referring to was the other Mr. A? As in Andie. Aren't those his knobby llama knees in the photo? So much for my attempt at cute quips!

And, yes, I agree that these guys (and gals) are addictive. We keep thinking that we want another llama then I think 1 llama=?? shetlands. It's similar to your chicken math.

Crosswinds Farm said...

Yes Karen Anne, that UK : ).

Cassie....Cassie...Cassie..I should have known!It is hard to remember sometimes that there is another person in this world with my twisted sense of humor.

Ebonwald Cardigans said...

ok #1 who is that last boy?

#2 I have Avyt's mother here :D

#3 Can i use him as a back up ram???

#4 looks like I'll be heading your way in the next week to bring Daisy down to get bred in Davenport..... i'm just sayin'

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