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.