September 7, 2013
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.