September 7, 2013

2013 Gotlands

I have to say that I am more and more impressed with the Gotland sheep.  Not only do they seem hardier than my BFL's but their fleece production is quite amazing.  Lambs born in early April are already sporting fleeces with staples that are about 5 inches long.  Now I am wondering whether to shear this fall, or wait for a longer fleece in the spring time.  There is always some winter damage so it is a tough call.  I will keep you posted.   have set aside one of this year's lambs for slaughter because we would like a chance to evaluate the size and quality of the carcass. 

I have three 82% Gotland rams left. They are recorded rather than registered as the minimum percentage for registering a ram is 87%. One is out of a set of triplets and has a lovely medium grey fleece.  The other is a twin who is slightly lighter in colour and not quite as large.  He is out of a ewe with some Border Leicester in her background and also has a lovely fleece.  There is a third ram that I am watching closely.  He is not quite as large but very well put together with a very dark almost black grey fleece.  He is out of a set of triplets which probably explains why he is just a little bit smaller.


There is also one 62% yearling ram that I kept back last year.  He looks as big as the BFL yearling rams.  It is hard to tell with the extra fleece but he seems to carry more finish. His fleece is quite lovely - a dark steel colour.  

On the female side, I have nothing left!  I am keeping the 82% Gotland ewe lambs and one 62% ewe lamb and the other is already sold.  I will have lambs next spring from two different rams which should make it a little easier to provide those who are interested with starter flock packages.

September 4, 2013

Where has the summer gone?

Our big summer project on the farm this year was my daughter's wedding to partner Adam Cooke on August 24th.  I am using that as my excuse for the limited number of postings this year.  It was absolutely wonderful and so now, we are are finally ready to turn our minds back to other things!  Of interest:

Butcher Lambs Available
I have a limited number of butcher lambs available this fall.  These are out of my BFL mules crossed with a Charolais ram.  The lambs are looking really good.  We have ten lambs booked in for a mid October slaughter date and they are going quickly.  I am expecting carcasses to range from 45 - 55 pounds.  $6/lb cut, wrapped and frozen.  Call the farm if you are interested.

Commercial Ewe Lambs:
I also have some really nice commercial ewe lambs for sale from this cross ie BFL mules bred to a Charolais ram.  I would love to add them to my own commercial flock but once again we are trying to keep numbers down.  Since I am still anxious to keep as many BFL's and Gotlands as I can there is not much room for expanding my own mule flock.  Lambs were born between March 22 and April 6.  $200/ head