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One of the other small stock I raise are a primitive breed of sheep called Soay. They are very similar to the first type of sheep domesticated by stone age humans. This is a very versatile animal. They originate from some rugged islands off Scotland.

They are smaller than most domestic sheep and are also hair sheep, meaning they do not need to be shorn. They shed their wool each spring and many people collect it for spinning. This wool is good spun which is vastly different from other hair sheep breeds as these others do not have a wool undercoat. The yarn made from soay wool is excellent and beautiful.

Soay are extremely hardy and very parasite resistant. They both browse and graze and unlike goats, they do not climb fences. They eat nasty stuff like poison ivy, invasive multiflora rose, thistles and more. Due to their size they can be maintained on small properties. Their meat is outstanding.

I will butcher two wethers this winter.

Note that ewes and rams carry horns? Sometimes polled or scurred heads show up. I prefer the horned sheep as they are great 'handlebars' when you do need to manage stock.

Rams and wethers:



Ewes and 2020 lambs:



I raise mostly for meat but do collect wool and sell it. I sell off all of the female lambs every year and keep the ram lambs and wether them at about four months of age for freezer camp.


~Ann



 
Posts: 16499 | Location: The LOST Nation | Registered: 27 March 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Very interesting! tu2
 
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Because of the coming elections, I thought you were going to show all the voters.

From both parties! rotflmo


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Posts: 57484 | Location: Dubai, UAE | Registered: 08 January 1998Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Saeed, your brain is poisoned by politics.


~Ann



 
Posts: 16499 | Location: The LOST Nation | Registered: 27 March 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Not at all Ann.

My brain is very clear of politics.

I dislike politics, of any kind.

And in today’s world, everything is politics!

Beats religion.


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Posts: 57484 | Location: Dubai, UAE | Registered: 08 January 1998Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Funny, the 2 subjects that are taboo in mixed conversation.


Never mistake motion for action.
 
Posts: 15267 | Location: Austin, Texas | Registered: 11 March 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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It is great to see that people have kept the genetics from the some of the original and carried it forward.
Are they well domesticated as far a handling?



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Challenge your limits


 
Posts: 4029 | Location: TN USA | Registered: 17 March 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by TCLouis:
It is great to see that people have kept the genetics from the some of the original and carried it forward.
Are they well domesticated as far a handling?


I don't handle them a lot. As a rule they are rather flighty but when I need to deal with them I coax them into the barn with a coffee can of sweet feed. They are easy to bribe. Once in a stall I can just grab horns to catch who I need.

My rams are friendlier than the ewes and the older rams do not mind being touched. One likes me to roo (the term for pulling their shedding coat) his wool when he is shedding. Once they figure out it feels better having me remove it they seem to decide it is a good thing. Ewes are never keen for handling but I do catch them to collect wool.

I very rarely have issues with them. They lamb in the field and are excellent and protective mothers. I have never had to trim hooves or treat any for disease. I do pop some ivermectin paste (standard horse wormer) in each in late winter before the ewes lamb.


~Ann



 
Posts: 16499 | Location: The LOST Nation | Registered: 27 March 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I don't know about everywhere else but down here it's common to keep a donkey with your herd of goats or sheep. They will kill any coyote or wolf (if possible) that tries to attack "THEIR" flock. Kinda along with the old principle of taking a sheepdog pup as a newborn + putting him on an ewes teat. He grows up thinking he's a sheep + will protect his herd.


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Posts: 15267 | Location: Austin, Texas | Registered: 11 March 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I have guardian dogs that live with my stock.


~Ann



 
Posts: 16499 | Location: The LOST Nation | Registered: 27 March 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I know a guy who loves these sheep if you know what I mean.
Seriously, he is quite weird and backwoods but knows sheep and raises these for meat. I guess not having to shear them is a plus.

http://bigrocksheepstation.com...ed-desert-sheep.html


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Posts: 27229 | Location: Where tech companies are trying to control you and brainwash you. | Registered: 29 April 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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All the hair sheep breeds are excellent for meat. They never get an off taste because they do not have the oil/lanolin that wool breeds have.

I do not know of any other hair sheep breed that produces a spinnable wool like soay. Soay is probably the most versatile sheep breed out there.

I am looking at adding another ancient breed to the farm: Wiltshire Horn. Very rare breed in the USA.


~Ann



 
Posts: 16499 | Location: The LOST Nation | Registered: 27 March 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Good move on the dog's Ann, they will die protecting their herd. I know that my blue heelers are # 1 security + as Hank the Cowdog would say, "The head of ranch security".


Never mistake motion for action.
 
Posts: 15267 | Location: Austin, Texas | Registered: 11 March 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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