Horner Shearing sent us a replacement part overnight and with rain forecast from tomorrow (which probably means it will be sunny), we thought we’d better get the sheep sheared today. You can’t shear them with a wet fleece and also, wet fleeces are attractive to flies. The main reason for shearing them is for their health, the wool is a bonus.
It was a lovely, sunny afternoon (after a fairly breezy morning), so conditions were perfect.
We started with Bluemli. She was not happy at all. She considers herself the leader of our small herd and so is used to getting her own way. Well, I am much better now at getting a sheep to sit and to her surprise, she found herself in shearing position A. Not for long. testing my training to the limits (and I spent the early part of the afternoon studying the DVD again), she struggled and moved did everything she could to get free. Especially when I tried to shave her leg! She did get a little stressed so we did spend some time calming her.
But, my revision paid off and we had much more control. Our positioning was also better so we put less strain on the drive shaft. And 35 minutes later, Bluemli emerged sheared, albeit a bit scruffy!
Then, it was the last sheep, Louise’s turn. She struggled at first, but soon relaxed. I didn’t do her stomach particularly well which caused problems later on. Nevertheless, we improvised and soon, she too, was sporting a short summer coat, albeit with some trimmings.
But we are really pleased. Sheep shearing is not easy at all (my back is most put out). But they are done, we have three bags of wool ready to be cleaned up and weaved.
The question is, do we do that too, or do we send it off.
Plus, 75 minutes to shear 2 sheep, the Blue Seal requires you to shear 3 sheep in 30 minutes, unaided. I think we need a bit more practice.