Friday, May 30, 2014

Sorting the hoggets

Last weekend we sorted through the hoggets. Or the teenage lambs, as the gorgeous girl calls them!

Basically, every year there are a group of lambs produced and these are sorted through at about twelve months old for faults in their wool or general issues that are best removed from the flock. The ewe hoggets will become breeding ewes (mothers!) soon, so we really only want good sheep as mothers. The wether hoggets (blokes without the ability to breed!) are then kept for wool growth, so we don't want any dodgy wool growers left out there.

Our hoggets were in with some lambs from last spring who haven't yet been shorn. So we didn't worry about checking those younger ones out. However, all of these hoggets and spring lambs still have their baby teeth. They're yet to cut any adult teeth. Such cute little teeth, as displayed by Mr Professional. I can do this little tooth display thing too, but not with such finesse, it'll probably take me a decade or so to be semi-organised at it!

Luckily it was a more enjoyable job looking at the wool. There's some great growth in them, these young ones have really thrived since the dry broke early this year. Mind you there was some interesting weathering/conditioning in the wool like in the neck of the one below. That yellow mark indicates some weathering, or 'rain damage' that has marked the wool. You don't want too much of this in your wool apparently, this town girl is still learning!

Once a fault in the wool the hogget was given a blue mark down it's nose. Later on Mr Professional and I put an eartag in these blue-nosed chaps. They will go to the sale a few weeks after we've shorn them.

And then we let them out of the yards. Off they all ran up the lane, as far as possible from us, as though that would give them extra freedom! Just like teenagers. Ugh. We're fast approaching those teenage years in our house with some small people not so small any more. I think I'm dreading it. Perhaps I need to change my attitude! Before those small people start to change theirs...

So that was our sorting of the hoggets. This weekend we are sorting the wethers. The blokes who aren't quite blokes ;-) This time we look at their teeth. That means grabbing every single snout and prising open their lips to get a glimpse of their teeth. Lovely hey?! Hope you're got a slightly more elegant weekend coming up!!!

Have a good one.

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