More Sheep – Actual and in Paintings

Today was a “rest” day. Well, not exactly but we did get to start a little later as it was Sunday.

We headed to a national farm to see a flock of Merino d’Arles sheep, one of four breeds of Merinos in France. We got to meet the author of a book on this breed (which just might found its way into my luggage – the book, not the sheep!)

As usual, we were met by people who know these animals and got a short talk about the breed and how they are managed, both there and as they head to higher pastures (more about that in the next post).


They showed us how they irrigate in the area.


Here are some of the sheep.


See the one that is taller than the others and has a reddish head? He is actually not a Merino but a Mauray Rousse from N. Africa. It seems that on many of the farms we visit, they mostly have one breed but a few of other breeds are often there as well.


This farm has 1500 ewes. Sheep will be leaving soon to pasture the summer in the alps. They will be back to lamb in the fall.


We were impressed by how they are able to move the sheep around just by knowing where to be around them, without using dogs.


At every stop we get to see things relevant to our visit.


Today it was a sheep bell


A carved shepherd’s stick


And some of their wool.


We left yet another flock to continue our journey to Provence. Here we visited a castle with a very impressive collection of paintings.


The artist’s name is Theodore Jourdan and he must have lived with sheep to create these paintings!



See the two “poufs” on the back of the sheep? We will talk about those in the next post when we saw them on actual sheep!


Published in: on May 26, 2014 at 10:58 pm  Leave a Comment  

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