The first weekend of 2015 was Shearing Weekend. OK, this isn’t an official holiday but maybe it should be! I was able to attend one shearing on Saturday and a second one on Sunday.
Saturday was the shearing at Meridian Jacobs. I am part of Farm Club there and a lot of us help out on shearing day to keep things running smoothly. Some people round up the sheep and get them in a holding area. Moving sheep smoothly from pre to post shearing really helps the shearer and we always like to keep the shearer happy!
Many of these sheep have been through this often and have learned to wait calmly when penned.
See how clean the plywood is here? Keeping the shearing area clean is another job Farm Club takes on. This ensures that fleeces don’t get contaminated with vegetable matter and odd pieces of sheared fleece between sheep. One person scoops up the fleece, another holds a bag and makes sure we know which fleece it is by inserting a card with the sheep’s name on it into the bag, and a third person lets the sheep out of the shearing area.
The sheep really look different after shearing. With Jacob sheep you can really see their color pattern!
Sunday was shearing at Joshua Farm Shetlands. They have a different way of helping things run smoothly – 4H kids and other adult helpers keep things moving.
Sheep are gathered up.
Each sheep gets its fleece blown out before getting sheared. That takes care of a lot of the dust and loose vegetable matter. These sheep are handled a lot so this doesn’t seem to bother them.
This is Cassie, a sheep we used to own who moved back into the breeding program here.
She looks good – with or without her fleece!
The fleeces go right to the skirting table.
Great day – and, of course, I brought home a few fleeces. I don’t think these were all mine….
One of the fleeces I got was Cassie’s. She washed up beautifully!
Two shearings in one weekend was a little tiring but worth it!