I can’t believe it’s already been two months since four little woollies took over my back yard! The girls are 5 months old now, and getting bigger every day. Lady decided 4 months was the perfect age to reveal that she is not, as I previously believed, polled. She is in fact scurred, which along with her split ear and her position at the bottom of the pecking order makes her look rather ragged, I’m afraid. I don’t mind too much, since I love her light coloring, and the scurs make it more likely that her offspring will be horned.
Lady and Duchess with Duke, the Lazy Mini-Buffalo.
They are really taming down well. Duke will let me touch him now (mainly I think because he’s a lazy mini-buffalo and it takes too much energy to run), and Duchess isn’t far behind. Lady is still very timid, but that may be due to her low social position, and the fact that Princess, the most dominant, isn’t keen on letting anyone else near me who might poach her tasty crunchy treats. 🙂
“Can I have crunchies, too?”
I’ve been letting Princess wear a plastic break-away collar part-time, since I intend to use collars rather than ear tags for the sheep who will be staying in my flock. None of the girls’ ear tags stayed in for more than 48 hours anyway and I don’t want to risk another torn ear. The ear tags are clearly not as permanent as the USDA would like to believe.
I tell Princess she looks fabulous in her collar and the other ewes will all be jealous. She says she looks fabulous anyway and the other ewes all want to chew on it, which gets in the way of important things such as grazing and mooching for crunchies.
“In the words of Queen Victoria, ‘We are not amused’.”
An acquaintance told me that the collar makes Princess looks like she’s got “swag”, since it was made for a full-size dairy sheep, not a tiny Soay ewe lamb, and is thus much too large for her. Since the collar is light plastic and weighs practically nothing, I’m leaving it as it is until I’m sure she’s as big as she’s going to get, then I’ll cut off the excess links. Then I’ll tackle the problem of getting collars on the Untouchables.
They figured out how to jiggle the gate latch open a few days ago, and went on a merry romp across the yard before I noticed and persuaded *cough*bribed*cough* them to go back to their field. Fortunately, although I’ve found the latch unlatched at least once since then, I have a back-up latch on the gate that they haven’t yet figured out.
“Curses! Foiled again!”
Whoever said sheep are dumb obviously never met Her Royal Woolliness & Co.