Sorting sheep

The sorted ewes waiting for us to be done. Today was sort sheep day and our daughter came out to help. The day started out good, coffee and breakfast with the wife. It went downhill after that. I took the dogs to go out and get the sheep. They had squeezed through the gap in the upper prime pasture and were in with the cows. The trouble with this is even on the way out to the sheep the dogs did not want to listen. It went downhill from there. I had no voice by the time I got the sheep into the barn lot. No one would listen, each dog thought he knew best and chose to just ignore me. We had to choke down the dogs several times as dominance was the issue. It was excruciating to be around, probably the worst day in the last year. Usually when one dog is off its game the other will work but today neither one wanted to step up to the plate and play ball. Annmarie and Sarah got the sheep into the barn and started to sort them. I really felt like a third wheel as there was not really anything for me to do. I did end up catching a boy that got into the girls and a girl that got sorted into the boys.

The boys waiting to go to the orchard. They will be the companions for the new ram we are getting on Saturday. We are going to keep the ram off of the herd for at least a month.

Our chute system is so nice! It was expensive but in all reality it is super efficient with two people but one person could do it. We sorted 101 sheep in an hour using the chute system. We even managed to snag the new baby and it was a girl so I only had to put a tag into its ear. We have had around 400 lambs born on the farm since we have moved here. I just keep ordering higher number tags so we can keep a running tally.

Annmarie took these pictures while they were sorting the sheep and I love how they turned out! I had to add them to the blog. Sarah did a great job helping us today.

After the whethers got moved to the orchard, this involved the two noncompliant dogs and a lot of yelling and swearing. I went out to mow some more grass and weeds.

I had not been to the upper pastures for the last two weeks. The weather and rain has been good for the weeds! Some of the weeds are over 6 feet high and very thick. I tried to mow next to the channel I dug in the upper prime squared pasture but I was just guessing where the channel was. I was doing pretty good until I got to the part where I had dug in a side channel. I tipped the tractor onto its side and had to stop it from rolling with the front bucket, which caused the water to dam up. I had to walk back to the house and get Annmarie and the pickup. I gave directions to her while she drove through the field that she cannot tell where the ditch or fence or anything is located. She did not like this. I chained up to the back of the tractor and ran the chain over the top of the mower so when she pulled my back upper wheel was pulled down into the dirt. This took three tries to let me get the bucket and the mower rearranged after each attempt until she pulled me out. She was a little hesitant to drive out but I assured her that if she went in a straight line back to the gate she would be okay. She made it without any difficulties. I kept mowing for another 3 hours. I have a good 8 hours more of mowing to do to get all the weeds knocked down. After two weeks I will then spray the fields and kill all the weeds and grass that are growing. After that I will hit it with the discs again.

Annmarie texted me that dinner was ready so I started to make my way back to the house. Just along the fence by where we store the fencing and gate supplies the weed were growing well. I thought I would get in there with the tractor and clean it up. Now I was unable to burn this this year as my nephew did not move his trailer and I didn’t want to burn with it that close to the fence so there are still a lot of dead tumbleweeds alongside the fence. I didn’t know I was in trouble until the tractor slid down the embankment and into the fence. The mower is caught behind the wooden fence post and I cannot get out again! I am going to have to go out, disconnect the mower and cut the fence in half so I can just drive the tractor out. I am pushing on the wire almost a foot now I just cannot get it out. So now I will need to fix the fence directly after retrieving the tractor so the alpaca don’t get out. If its any consolation dinner was excellent.

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