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4 years 8 months ago #535992 by Tander
New to Lifestyling was created by Tander
Hi All,

We moved to the Wairarapa from Wellington about 5 years ago and have a 2 hectare block. We were given 4 ewes from a neighbor in return for grazing and have had a ram in early May so our lambs are due now. We have had 2 (lost one twin) and I have posted a topic to get some advise on the surviving twin.

I learnt my first lesson in flipping a sheep yesterday which went better than I though actually, thanks YouTube. We did this to check the ewe for milk flow. Already learned that we should have had the ewes dagged and crutched a month or so ago as they are very woolly and daggy around the udders which I don't think has helped the lambs at all. 2 ewes have yet to lamb - is it too late to try and get them done?

We also have 7 chickens that are now laying up a storm and we are getting 5 to 7 eggs per day. This is great as we like to share some with our neighbours as the chickens free range over at their place too.
Besides that we have a cat and a dog so lots to keep our eyes on but loving being out in the country with the space and the great weather - if it ever stops raining.

Keen for any advice and hopefully my posts may help any other newbie Lifestylers.

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4 years 8 months ago #536000 by LongRidge
Replied by LongRidge on topic New to Lifestyling
If you are able to be gentle when you turn the ewes onto their rumps, and have shears or scissors that work, then it is definitely not too late to give the udder area and bum a trim.
When using shears or scissors, do not pull the wool while you are cutting, because you will likely cut the skin. Try to sort-of "slide" the cutting implement under the wool and then cut.
Also trim the hooves while they are turned over. I used scissor-actioned garden secateurs until I had hoof clippers.

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4 years 8 months ago #536002 by tonybaker
Replied by tonybaker on topic New to Lifestyling
sounds like you are on track to be happy LSB'ers!!
My experience with sheep is KISS...keep it simple and Yes people will think you are stupid! The main thing I found was to keep the sheep well shorn. The wool is basically worthless and is a nuisance to the sheep and you. I shore mine twice a year and now is a good time to get that wool off before the flies start working. Just in case -
get yourself a can of Maggot which is a nasty chemical but essential if you want to avoid the horrible flystrike thingy. With a small flock, just leave the ram in with the ewes all year, I can assure you it makes no difference to the sheep and he will probably get through the fence later anyway.
Eventually, think about getting a meatier breed such as Dorpers or Wiltshires. These breeds don't need shearing and are generally more resistant to the normal sheep problems.
Can you make a small holding pen for the sheep? this is very handy for when the shearer comes. Ideally it should be where the water trough is so that the sheep get used to going into it, then you can just shut the gate when you want to catch the sheep.
Good luck, and welcome to LSB!

5 acres, Ferguson 35X and implements, Hanmay pto shredder, BMW Z3, Countax ride on mower, chooks, Dorper and Wiltshire sheep. Bosky wood burning central heating stove and radiators. Retro caravan. Growing our own food and preserving it. Small vineyard, crap wine. :)

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