Farmless farmer seeking solace

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12 years 5 months ago #29517 by Tatjna
I found this forum after doing a search to see how many small farmers learn to shear their own sheep, and got hooked on people's tales of their menageries.

I don't have a farm these days (boo!) but have in the past and have also worked as a shepherd. These days I indulge my farming fantasies by shearing other people's sheep on small farms around Wellington. It helps me get around the country parts of the district and keep up with what's going on in the farming world.

I like reading everyone's stories and you never know, I may have something useful to contribute - at least if it's about sheep or shearing!

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12 years 5 months ago #400865 by greenfingers
Welcome Tatjna!
You have a great skill that is in high demand I suspect. I too love reading about what other people are doing on their blocks...For a nonfarming person like myself, it has been an invaluable site full of great titbits of advice.
Look forward to reading your contributions, nothing is too great or too small :D

9.5 acres with 300-odd pines and lots of wobbly fences [:D]

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12 years 5 months ago #400927 by LongRidge
Once upon a time ..... I enrolled for a course to help me learn to shear, but not enough people enrolled so it got cancelled. My neighbour then tried to teach me - he can do it without cutting them - but the gash down the side of the first sheep I tried encouraged me to keep to the handshears to just tidy them up. So I get a professional do to ours. With about 60 and able to cover them, I can get them done at realistic rates.

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12 years 5 months ago #400994 by Tatjna
@LR Yeah, it takes a while to get the hang of it and unfortunately some poor sheep has to suffer the ministrations of learners. My son is learning now, we start with the last side because it's less bumpy and wrinkly so gets cut less. We'll work our way back to bellies, by which time he should be able to avoid cutting them. ;-)

I'm all for people learning to shear their own even though it'd put me out of a (part time) job. I just think it's a useful skill and tremendously satisfying.

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12 years 5 months ago #400995 by Mich
Replied by Mich on topic Farmless farmer seeking solace
Hi Tatjna - have sent you a PM. You sound familiar :-)
Cheers, Mich.

Good exercise for the heart is to bend down and help someone up. Anon.

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12 years 5 months ago #401009 by Mich
Replied by Mich on topic Farmless farmer seeking solace
So it IS you!! :-) Lovely to see you on the site.

Cheers, Mich.

Good exercise for the heart is to bend down and help someone up. Anon.

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12 years 5 months ago #401013 by Tatjna
Hehe I knew I wouldn't be able to stay in stealth mode for long! :)

This site is great, I'm amazed I didn't find it earlier.

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12 years 5 months ago #401018 by stephclark

Tatjna;396269 wrote: @LR Yeah, it takes a while to get the hang of it and unfortunately some poor sheep has to suffer the ministrations of learners. My son is learning now, we start with the last side because it's less bumpy and wrinkly so gets cut less. We'll work our way back to bellies, by which time he should be able to avoid cutting them. ;-)

I'm all for people learning to shear their own even though it'd put me out of a (part time) job. I just think it's a useful skill and tremendously satisfying.


ok.. have to ask.. i have heard of left and right, near and off, port and starboard.. but where is the last side?

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12 years 5 months ago #401020 by Tatjna
Hahah oops sorry, shearing jargon! :)

Shearing follows a pattern, it goes - belly/crutch, over the tail, neck/head, first shoulder, long blow, down the neck, last side.

So it's the last part of the sheep where you shear down the side and out the back leg, and the sheep's legs are pointing out to the shearer's left. It's the easiest bit to learn on because it's an easy position to hold the sheep in and a nice flat roundy bit to learn your handpiece work on.

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12 years 5 months ago #401021 by stephclark
ahhh ok.. understand. all sounds very complicated and a real skill..i know if i tried the sheep would end up looking abit strange, tuffs left all over

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12 years 5 months ago #401022 by Mich
Replied by Mich on topic Farmless farmer seeking solace
Tatjna is my shearer!! We're very lucky in Wellington to have her - she's great. But I'm with Steph - "last side"? Um....
Oh, OK, just read the explanation.
Cheers, Mich.

Good exercise for the heart is to bend down and help someone up. Anon.

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12 years 5 months ago #401092 by eelcat
Does Tatjna come over the Hill?

1 Border collie, 1 Huntaway, 2 Lhasa Apsos, Suffolk and arapawa ewe crosses, an Arapawa ram,an East Friesian ewe , 5 cats, 42 ducks , 1 rooster and 30 hens, 5 geese, 12 goats, 2 donkeys, 2 house cows, one heifer calf, one bull calf, 3 rabbits and lots and lots and lots of fruit trees...

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12 years 5 months ago #401097 by Tatjna
I used to live over the hill! (in Tinui).

If you were desperate I would, but I'd have to charge a travel fee for that distance and I'm pretty sure you could find someone more local and get it done. I'm also painfully aware of treading on other people's toes since Martinborough's not 'my turf'. I'd suggest trying to find a local shearer first and if it's nudging flystrike season and you haven't found someone, send me a PM.

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12 years 5 months ago #401111 by eelcat
Thanks T. May well do so, having trouble finding one over here who doesn't charge an arm and a leg and then some!

1 Border collie, 1 Huntaway, 2 Lhasa Apsos, Suffolk and arapawa ewe crosses, an Arapawa ram,an East Friesian ewe , 5 cats, 42 ducks , 1 rooster and 30 hens, 5 geese, 12 goats, 2 donkeys, 2 house cows, one heifer calf, one bull calf, 3 rabbits and lots and lots and lots of fruit trees...

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12 years 5 months ago #401262 by digby
@ eelcat ... nothing worse than a shearer who fleeces you ;)

Bye
Digby [:)]

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