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The annual sheep shed muck-out

the shed – before –

Round about the beginning of May I started my annual “sheep shed muck-out”.   I needed to get it spick and span for shearing in June.  The sheep love their shed and spend a lot of time in it during the winter so it can get pretty mucky.  They would spend a lot of time in it during the summer too if they got half the chance.  Not fans of the hot sun, they seek out shady places, especially in the run-up to shearing when they’re still wearing their winter coats and everyone else is in tee-shirts.

As soon as the grass comes through at the end of April we shut off access to the shed and encourage the little darlings to break their “shed habit”.  They grumble for a bit and stand at the fence baa-ing, but after a few days they remember they have other shady places to lurk in such as their very own silvo-pasture.

With the sheep out of the way, I can roll my sleeves up and start mucking out.  I’m quite strict with myself and only do an hour a day to save my back.

making progress …

At first the job seems endless, but after a few days I can see how much progress I’ve made and it’s a great feeling.  The hens love it too, they help out, grubbing out little insects and having dust baths in the newly unearthed dusty layer beneath the clods of dung.

all ready for shearing!

This year it took me about three weeks to finish the shed.  I lost count of how many trailer loads of dung I lobbed onto the muck heap.  The best part was setting up the hurdles ready for shearing which I found hugely fun in a ‘re-arranging the furniture in a room’ kind of a way.  After many different hurdle arrangements which had to look right as well be practical, I eventually found a way to divide the shed into three areas.  Area 1:  multiple sheep waiting room, Area 2:  single sheep waiting room, Area 3:  shearing zone complete with board.

Now we just have to wait for shearing which is late this year because of the wet weather.  Its already July but we have the shearer booked in for Saturday so fingers crossed it stays dry.