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New Sheep Paddock





Her name is...STELLA

Colonel's Blog, Earthdate 22 Jan 2023...

Hey Y'all!


Good Sunday morning from Free Missouri! It was a humid, foggy morning for rounds today. All animals are doing well. We didn't get much done with milk yesterday, we put up some clabber and clabber cheese but that was all. We are now officially overflowing with milk. What an awesome position to be in! We unloaded the feed yesterday and got everything into the barn before the rain. The second pic above is me lifting the feed bag with the tractor. Everything worked out well getting it off the trailer and under the barn. We finally got the sheep moved yesterday! Only two weeks after we wanted but they are moved. The third pic is the sheep in their new ~3 acre paddock. In order to move the sheep, we started by moving their shelters with the tractor. We then walked the perimeter putting in 'step-ins' which are 3 ft plastic posts with a metal spike on the bottom and little plastic tabs that hold the electrified poly-wire at different heights from the ground. When the posts were in place, we unrolled three poly-wire reels at three different heights securing each to the step-ins. Then we opened the old paddock and called the sheep to come to the new paddock. It sounds like "sheep-sheep-sheep!" [We pride ourselves on our originality ;-) ] The sheep ran into their new paddock very excited for the new ground. They immediately started grazing on the little stockpiled grass available. With the sheep in place, we moved their water troughs and the solar fence charger. Finally, we rolled up the three wires and pulled up the step-ins from their last paddock. This little paddock-move dance is something we do daily in the growing seasons but with much smaller paddocks. The beef cows were bellowing because they heard/watched the entire process and were quite sure it was their turn to move.


Today the farm project is MILK! We will make as much as we can using our practiced recipes. We may try a more complicated cheese, like maybe mozzarella. We have been adding the leftover whey from our different milk products to the fermenting hog feed. They LOVE it and it seems to be more satisfying to them. If you can imagine it, they even leave some feed in their troughs to come back to later. Betty's is finished producing colostrum and her milk is now in. So, we have almost double the milk coming into the house. Thank you to those that offered suggestions for a name for Betty's calf. We carefully considered all and chose Stella. The bottom pic is Stella. I also attached a pic of one of our Livestock Guardian Dogs (LGDs), Toezer. Our LGDs are a cross between Anatolian Shepherd and Great Pyrenees. The majority spend their days either in the paddock with the sheep or enclosed right next to the paddock as they learn to be with the sheep. Toezer has a bit of a deformity on one of his rear paws, it just looks like his bones twisted a bit to the side. Of course, as a fighter pilot, I had to name him something that highlighted his toes, so... Toezer. We didn't want Toezer to be in with the sheep because we were concerned that he wouldn't be able to run well enough to guard properly so we made him a farm dog and he roams the entire property at his own pace. His pace, by the way, is no different than the other LGDs. He isn't concerned at all with his toes! He is a valuable asset as he is able to move about freely to keep predators at bay while the other dogs are right with the sheep.


Local Farm Report for 21 Jan 2023:

Harvest:

29 Chicken eggs

7 Duck eggs

4 1/2 Gallons of milk

Sales:

1 pound med Ground Sausage

1 Med Variety Shipping Bundle


Cheers!

Rich & Shelley


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