Friday, December 18, 2009
Thursday, December 10, 2009
Here are two nearly identical yuglet sokket katmoget twins out of Cihat and V Creek Fantasia. These two were fantastic from the time they were born, and I still like them. There’s barely a difference in them. I will admit that I’m biased by their striking markings, but their fleeces are also gorgeous (like their mother’s). We really like Cihat and Fantasia, but they are very different sheep, with one being the result of heavy AI, and the other a product of pure domestic lines. So, these two ewes are quite interesting. They are about as identical as lambs can get though. I can tell them apart, but it’s not easy. I really didn’t see a need to keep three nearly identical sheep, but these two and their mother convinced me to give it a try this year. I doubt we’ll have that luxury next year. My motto is enjoy them while you have them, because you never know what next year will bring.
Disregard the white one in the background. She apparently wanted a glamour shot of her own.
Thursday, December 3, 2009
Sheltering Pines Cor de Nuit is outstanding! She has about everything I want in a Shetland. She’s stout, square, and has a gorgeous single-coated katmoget fleece with great density. I do think she would do very well in a shetland show, but then I think that about many of our ewes. But, if you go line-by-line through the standard, I don't think we have another ewe that is closer to the intent. She just has more frame than many of our ewes.
She’s out of Thelonius Monk (a Bartok son) and Justalit’l Lana (a Bramble Dixon daughter). She carries polled from Lana and spots from Thelonius, and is 43.75% UK.
She's one of those ewes that I like as much today as when we brought her in. She produced two outstanding rams this year. If only they had been ewes!
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
You can see her excellent structure in the picture below. Lots of frame and very level.
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Friday, October 30, 2009
Pyrenee had two very nice ram lambs this year. Her dark brown was featured in a recent post, and her other ram (Merlin) lives with Penelope in CT. We're amazed at how friendly she has become. She was our wildest sheep a year ago. I think Stephen trains them that way (LOL).
Her two year old micron test was very respectable (AFD: 29.2, CV: 19.0). I like to keep the CV's less than 20.0%. That's what I like about this ewe. I'd like to shave a few microns off of her fleece, but it has everything else. I have an excellent ram for her this year who might accomplish that. He also has a very low CV, and has the darkest blue fleece I've ever seen in person. Hers is actually quite dark as well. I hope to get some fleece shots of some sheep very soon.
Monday, October 19, 2009
The first one is out of Pyrenee's Morn and UTS Clover. He was born black, but is now dark brown. I'm not well versed in the dark brown coloration, but his brown goes right down to the skin (nearly). His father was mioget. I expected that he might turn shaela, but that's clearly not the case. I didn't expect dark brown. We kept him because is a knockout! He won't be extra fine, but he has great density and structure!
This guy is out of Cor de Nuit and Cihat. He is a half-poll. He has a wonderfully dense, single-coated fleece that is very uniform. It won't be extra fine (which is why we are selling him), but it is just a beautiful spotted fleece. His structure is out of this world! Just a phenomenal conformation! I'd love to find a way to use him this year, but it's not going to happen. Very square and gentle. His brother was even nicer, but developed fatal horns.
The last ram is a Leyland son out of Bluebell. He looks mioget in this picture, but his fleece is actually fawn. His mother is mioget. This guy is also awesome. He's probably the best all around ram of the three, even though his conformation isn't quite up to the other two guys. It's still a very very good conformation, however. The other rams are at the top of the charts for that.
His fall micron test was a very respectable 25.2/4.8/19.2. Again, not extra fine, but very uniform from front to back. This finds me again asking, "why wasn't he a ewe?". All of our best lambs were rams this year. We had some really nice ewes as well, but the rams were the winners in terms of overall quality.
Violet’s fleece is a hand spinner’s dream. Nice density! Overall, she rates well!
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
Right now, she has an intermediate fleece that has the uniformity that we’re breeding for. She’s just a good, solid, uniformly fleeced foundation ewe who I think can help us improve. I’m very interested in how this one turns out! I haven't decided who we'll breed her to. We've never had ewe lambs grow like they have this year.
Tuesday, October 13, 2009
Friday, October 9, 2009
Thursday, October 8, 2009
Wednesday, October 7, 2009
Tuesday, October 6, 2009
As the saying goes..."A shetland a day will keep the doctor away." With that in mind, I'd like to continue on with our annual tradition of introducing all of our ewes leading up to breeding season.
Gold is a very nice yearling ewe in most ways. She is a very light mioget yuglet sokket that has matured nicely over the past 12 months. Gold is one of the few that we kept almost exclusively for conformation and markings. She has a lot of both! Ultimately, we decided that we can't keep ewes that don't fit our goals unless they are exceptionally strong in some pieces of it. So, Gold gets to stay and hopefully she'll produce a ewe lamb who'll be even closer to our vision for the flock! There are a few things we don't like about her (there's always something with all of them), but we've found that a lot of people really like her. She's always been one of our three mischievious imps (Primrose and Snapdragon are the other two).
Gold has the fleece type that you either really like, or you hate. Even her facial structure is something that you either love or hate. I happen to like it a lot. It comes down to whether you like large, beefy sheep, or typey, more refined shetlands. She is more refined. We have both types in our flock, and I can't say I have a strong preference to either type. I have preferences in fleece type, but that's a topic for another day.
We didn't breed Gold last year as a lamb because we felt she was a bit small. She's still not a large ewe, but she's likely in the 70 pound range right now. We haven't taken fall weights yet, but she looks in that area to me.
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
Here's Will with Fantasia. Love the hoodlum slumped in the background...
Monday, June 29, 2009
Some of the farms have been late cutting hay this year. I would say at least three weeks late in many cases. That results in a first cut product that our sheep won’t eat. As a result, we don’t have any new hay yet.
I wanted to take this opportunity to blog about a few of our favorite lambs this year:
This is Bluebell and Leyland’s ram.
See the difference? This is a gulmoget ewe out of Bluebell’s mom, Tiara. Her father is Clover. We just love this girl! She’ll have an intermediate fleece.
He’s really developing nicely. We’re going to hold onto him until we get a micron test this September, then we will decide if we are keeping or selling him. If anyone wants dibs on him, let us know and we’ll give you the right of first refusal. I don’t think he’ll be 20 microns like his father, but I do think he’ll have a nice test. His color, fleece type, and conformation really stand out in a crop of very nice lambs this year! I also believe he’ll have a full rack even though his father is a half poll. I bred Leyland to ewes that I knew lacked the polled gene. This guy is going to be fawn. At one point, it looked like he would be mioget, but now I don’t think so. I realize a lot of people would register him as a dark mioget, but I think he’s technically a fawn.
Why do I say that? Because here is a true mioget gulmoget.
Next is one of Cor de Nuit’s twin rams. We are very pleased with these rams. Both are very single coated (from their mom) and built like greek gods (although none of the greek gods were sheep…that I’m aware of).
This guy is black (duh), but carries spots.
I’m not sure whether he carries brown. He has small scurs (again, from his mother). I don’t know if we’ll use him this fall or not. I’d like to. He has about everything we’re breeding for.
His brother is also structurally fantastic!
I think this guy is an improvement over both parents at this point. He seems to have inherited the strengths from each. He’s certainly the best spotted ram we’ve ever owned! I don’t know whether we’ll use him this year either. We have an abundance of black based sheep and really don’t want to add a bunch more to the mix. But he’s pretty amazing! I can’t find anything wrong with either of these guys. I’m not nuts about scurs, so maybe that’ll end up being the fly in the ointment, but I don’t see anything else. Both are two months old now, so now’s when we normally start to find flaws in stuff. So far, so good with these guys.
I like the bloodlines with these two as well. We took the best of what we liked in domestic lines (Cihat) and crossed it with some UK content that we liked (Cor de Nuit). I would imagine that the results of such crosses would be hit or miss, but I think this one was a definite hit.
We did the same thing with Fantasia and ended up with these gems this spring.
These yuglet sokket katmoget ewe lambs are singled coated, dense, crimpy, and just fantastic! We liked them so much that we felt we could sell Fantasia! The lambs inherited much of their looks from her, but they do seem to have their father’s great tail and spotting. Very nice lambs!Here is another great little ewe lamb out of Onyx Velour and Cihat. Again, we went for the domestic/UK cross. She’s a yuglet sokket gulmoget who looks very much like a caped flecket. She has a nice fleece, even though it’s not exactly what I’m after. Like I said, you can’t nail it every time. I do think she’ll be intermediate, but I’m very interested in seeing her first fleece test. Her father actually has a lower CV than her mother, but both have excellent micron tests. Both have sub 25% CV’s, which is what we’re after. It just results in a much nicer spinning fleece!
Last but not least, is Buttercup and Leyland’s fawn gulmoget ewe lamb. She’s probably my favorite this year! She’s built extremely well (thanks to our dear little Buttercup), and seems to have a fleece that we are targeting! She’ll also be intermediate, but she is very uniform. All of the above lambs are that way, even though their fleece types are very different.
One thing we learned this year is that Leyland is a gulmoget factory. He’ll always throw gulmogets regardless of who he is bred to!
Friday, June 19, 2009
We also decided to let two of Leyland's ewes lambs from this spring go. We had planned to keep them, but we just don't have the room. So, these are both available. Leyland is exceedingly fine fleeced with a nice crimp and is half polled.
Queen Anne's Lace's ewe is also a black gulmoget, in addition she is spotted and carries brown. She is also out of Leyland. She has a lot of frosting, I actually like it as the yarn will end up being a pretty heathery steely grey, I think. She has a large krunet cap and then a cute little white booger on the side of her nose. Very distinctive appearance. She is also close to being halter trained and can leave here any time.
We have more information on all of these ewes on our website. Would be very happy to send additional photos, fleece samples, micron results on the adults and parents. I also have some roving samples on the adults if you are interested.
Delivery is available.