Saturday, October 30, 2010

L G D Puppies

Pete and I delivered the last of the sheep leaving here for the year to Steve and Heidi Welch on Thursday ... and they have these VERY cute Maremma puppies for sale and ready to go!
I have three Maremmas and love the breed as livestock guardians.
There are seven available, I think.
They have been raised with sheep, donkeys, chickens, ducks, and cattle ... so they are pretty much good to go with any sort of livestock.

Let me know if you are interested in a couple of them and I'll get Steve and Heidi to contact you.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Welcome, Petula

This is a picture of my new cow, Petula. She is coming to me from my friend Charlotte's farm, Charlotte's Web Farm. The picture is of Petula last summer, with the FOUR calves that she raised! Petula is a nice short Dexter, but not a 'short-leg'. She did NOT take well to being milked, but will do well looking after the calves from cows that can be milked.

Now ... I KNOW that I said that I was maxed out with cattle numbers ... BUT ... I sold Sir Loin and Whiskey Jack (he had bred his cows) ... so I am still down one animal ... for now ... :-)

Leo Update - Updated!

Leo has been given a reprieve. He is being 'leased' by some young folks who recently purchased a starter flock from Willow Garden. He'll get to stay there until March ... or until they have issue with his behaviour. In March, if he doesn't sell ... then he will be ground and seasoned into pepperoni sticks!

Leo has been SOLD! Wonderful news!

So one of my boys coming back in early November will get a reprieve from their visit with Uncle Ted while they are 'Leased' over the winter. This is a good thing as WillowGarden Ingersoll (out of WillowGarden Grenadine and Wintertime Red Velvet) is WAY too nice to eat without having some lambs from him first ... :_)

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

V Creek Leo ... FOR SALE

... live for $200 if out of here before Oct 28th (can deliver to eastern Ontario and up to the Ottawa area that day). If not sold by then, he will be for sale at $8 per pound as seasoned pepperettes (they are awesome).

This animal broke rule number one for a ram on my farm, and took me down from behind, with a blow to the knees ... followed by a blow to my butt! Those of you who are laughing ... can stop now ... and ask yourself how many pounds of pepperettes you want!

Leo was the finest of all my mature rams ... but I have kids come here and he can NOT stay!
He'd be an awesome herd sire as he is a Dillon gulmoget without the side fading ... and he is still quite soft!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Daily Message From 'The Universe'

They bring me to tears every single day, Bill.

They're almost too much to bear.

Sometimes, I even wonder how it's possible...

Of course, I'm talking about your supernatural resilience, your steely courage, and your gritty determination.


Thy kingdom come,
The Universe

Monday, October 11, 2010

DaVinci's Breeding Group

As I strive to keep my flock at, or below 30 sheep ... I have had some tough decisions to make. One such decision was to sell HarmonyMarsh DaVinci. He is an AWESOME emsket spotted scurred ram. But I couldn't sell him without giving him a few girls to breed before he went.
He has three of my most favourite and finest ... WillowGarden Amaretto (centre below) an Iris fawn katmoget grand-daughter ...
HarmonyMarsh Willow (rear below) another Iris grand-daughter ... and WillowGarden Hattie McDaniel (front and centre below), the ewe judged by Linda Doane and Carole Precious (Dailley) as the ewe most resembling the ewes in the original importation.
I look forward to lambs from this trio ...

Will ... Farmer In Training

My son Chris and daughter-in-law Kerri brought the kids to the farm for Thanksgiving on Sunday. We had an AWESOME time, as we always do. I love this crew more than I can ever express!

In this post though ... I am going to focus on Will ... who wants to grow up and be a farmer 'just like Grandpa'. OMG ... does this young man know how to work this old man ... :-)
His favourite job is to feed the chickens and to gather the eggs. These pictures show the enthusiasm and passion that he puts into feeding the birds their scratch ... :-)
It was almost like a dance ... and the birds loved it, too!
I love you, Will Stearman!

Sunday, October 03, 2010

Sometimes, I wonder why I can't take a bad picture of this pair ... but I KNOW why. I just want to hear it from a lot of people ... :-) OMG are they not beautiful!
My family is my life ... and my family includes the friends I have chosen ... and the friends who have chosen me.

Life is good!

Saturday, October 02, 2010

My New Ram

This is my new ram. He will breed the bulk of my ewes this Fall ... :-)

He was born at Cathy Gallivan's Spring Water Farm in New Brunswick. But, his dam was sold bred so he is out of my breeding. His dam is WillowGarden Cherry Bomb (F3 /F4 Timothy, F3/F4 Greyling, F2 Glayva, F2 Hornblower) and his sire is WillowGarden Garnish (F3 /F4 Timothy, F3/F4 Greyling, F2 Glayva, F2 Hornblower). As you can see, this lamb was very much linebred on Great Plains Cherry and my two UK import rams, Hornblower and Glayva)

Now I just have to find a way to get him home. There may be another road trip involved ... :-)

Full Circle

These are pictures of my flock taken during my 'early years'.
In 2002, I bred 17 Shetland ewes. I was new, enthused, and ready to work like mad to develop an awesome flock. I loved my sheep and knew each one of them. We spent quiet time together and dreamed together about awesome lambs.
It was a very good time for this Shetland shepherd ... :-)
Over the years, the flock numbers just sort of 'grew'.
In 2003 and 2004 numbers of ewes bred were around 55.
In 2005 and 2006 those numbers were between 75 and 89.
In 2007 and 2008 I started to downsize and had the numbers back down into the 50's.
In 2009, after losing numerous lambs to coyotes, I drastically reduced the numbers to 25 ewes bred.
This year, 2010, I have 18 adult Shetland ewes to breed. Six of them are extension dominant and will be bred to Cormo rams. The other 12 will be bred to fine fleeced, very correct, spotted Shetland rams. I am also retaining eight Shetland ewe lambs for evaluation, but I have stopped breeding ewe lambs.

That has my ewe flock at 26. I have 5 rams, but one of them will spend the winter at another farm and then be sold. This means that I will have 30 sheep on my farm this winter!

The sheep that I have retained are the best ... of the best ... of the best of what I have produced over the years. I know each one of them. I love my little flock of little sheep and look forward to once again spending quiet time sitting and dreaming with them!

Pictures will follow as soon as I get myself a little more organized ... :-)

Life is good!