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Author Topic: Shedding sheep breeds  (Read 5246 times)

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
Re: Shedding sheep breeds
« Reply #15 on: December 26, 2015, 05:02:40 pm »
Do you find the same with yours, @Maggy, @daveh, @Brucklay, @Anke ?  (I added a few folks I know have, or have had, CMs.)

Thanks for getting experienced owners involved. I am eager to read several opinions on the matter.

Don't have CM's, never had them either. I keep shetlands and gotlands, particularly for their fleece (amongst other reasons).

Sorry Anke, must've been getting confused with @goosepimple
Don't listen to the money men - they know the price of everything and the value of nothing

Live in a cohousing community with small farm for our own use.  Dairy cow, beef cattle, pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing
Voss Electric Fence

Maggy

  • Joined Jun 2012
  • Carmarthenshire
Re: Shedding sheep breeds
« Reply #16 on: December 26, 2015, 05:36:06 pm »
I would agree that all CMs are not really wholly self shedding, though some shed more than others.  I also keep Portlands and Hill Radnors (both rare breeds) and if you are not too bothered about the self shedding business then I would really recommend the Hill Radnors, they are a Welsh Hill breed but quite a large one.  I find them the easiest and most docile (dopey!) of the breeds I keep and they are very used to the very very wet weather/ ground we have here in Wales  :)

Brucklay

  • Joined Apr 2010
  • Perthshire
    • Brucklay Pygmy Goats
    • Facebook
Re: Shedding sheep breeds
« Reply #17 on: December 26, 2015, 05:51:39 pm »
Personally I love the Castlemilks - yes, agreed they are not stupid and not dopey, lamb well have an excellent meat and are very hardy - from Aberdeenshire's relentless wind to northern Perthshire's endless rain they look perky every morning and even recognised a new (to me) vehicle on day 2 :) They get very used to routine and will quite happily allow me to wander around them, they don't all shed, although some do seem to pass the trait and as the fleece so short it is easy to clip once you get into the line of the break - beautiful to me - yes, and elegant to all I would say.
Pygmy Goats, Shetland Sheep, Zip & Indie the Border Collies, BeeBee the cat and a wreak of a building to renovate!!

goosepimple

  • Joined May 2010
  • nr Lauder, Scottish Borders
Re: Shedding sheep breeds
« Reply #18 on: December 26, 2015, 06:42:58 pm »
We left our CM's without shearing them as it just wasn't that hot here this summer - the shedding thing happens all over the field so if you are limited on grazing (ie no alternative grazing field) then they are shedding it all over the area they are eating. 

This is the first year we haven't sheared and the result is that they look a bit of a mess, they haven't shed evenly if you like - clumps here and there, so just depends if you want them to look nice or not, expect they wouldn't in the 'wild' and doubt that they're bothered.

Our best self shearers have been our north ronaldsays but they are not the easiest to deal with, they tend to be a bit on the flimsy side as a breed.
registered soay, castlemilk moorit  and north ronaldsay sheep, pygmy goats, steinbacher geese, muscovy ducks, various hens, lots of visiting mallards, a naughty border collie, a puss and a couple of guinea pigs

DCBBGB

  • Joined Dec 2015
  • Mid Glamorgan
Re: Shedding sheep breeds
« Reply #19 on: December 26, 2015, 07:52:24 pm »
Thanks all for your responses. I see there is quite a bit of experience on the Castlemilk Moorits.

How do they cope with being out wintered (in wet/windy conditions), and what are their feed requirements like?

Same questions for the Exlana (if anyone has got experience with them).

Timothy5

  • Joined Oct 2015
Re: Shedding sheep breeds
« Reply #20 on: December 26, 2015, 07:58:56 pm »
A truly hardy, self-shedding, sheep ? Why not get Soays, or Soay crosses. They have managed to survive on Scottish islands since the Vikings put them there, so they have proved their worth for being hardy. They are easy lambers, ideal for first time shepherds.

One word about long grass, though. Sheep don't want yesterdays grass, they prefer tomorrows growth, so get it topped off.

mab

  • Joined Mar 2009
  • carmarthenshire
Re: Shedding sheep breeds
« Reply #21 on: December 26, 2015, 09:30:47 pm »
I have easycare sheep which were bred on Anglesey (I think) specifically to be wool shedders that cope well with the welsh climate and be commercially viable.


They're not especially pretty to look at though.

DCBBGB

  • Joined Dec 2015
  • Mid Glamorgan
Re: Shedding sheep breeds
« Reply #22 on: December 26, 2015, 10:02:50 pm »
I now have made my decision and I thought I'd let every one know that I will be going for the Castlemilk Moorit. Although they are not officially self shedding, they do not have tremendous amounts of wool (approx. 1kg); an important factor for me was that there are still very small numbers of CMs around and helping preserve the breed will feel like doing something good. The fact that they are one of the most intelligent breed will make it all the more interesting (and I do like the look of them). I will start with 2 ewes for 6 months to get used to them and will then introduce a ram and take it from there. At the moment I am not planning on creating a big herd but simply learning to know the breed and appreciating the meat. Depending on the potential demand in my area I will consider marketing the products and in turn, grow the numbers.

I thank you all for your posts and advice. I will keep you posted if you are interested and will certainly have more questions! (planning to purchase the sheep by the end of Feb / beginning of March 2016)

devonlady

  • Joined Aug 2014
Re: Shedding sheep breeds
« Reply #23 on: December 27, 2015, 11:36:45 am »
Out of interest, why do you want a self shedding breed? Your neighbouring sheep keeper would, no doubt, shear your little flock alongside his and the fleece is useful for lots of things, not least, lining your next year's runner bean trench.

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
Re: Shedding sheep breeds
« Reply #24 on: December 27, 2015, 01:51:13 pm »
Well, they are not really self-shedding but I am very happy to hear that this delightful rare breed has found another supporter  :thumbsup: ;D

The meat is very distinctive, lean and really tasty, slightly gamey (but not in a bad way.)  Friends of mine who say they don't usually like lamb (or mutton) really enjoy CM meat.  If you decide to go into producing meat boxes, it should do really well. 

I know that you at the moment are thinking negatively about fleece, but if you or your wife should ever decide to take up spinning, CM is an unusual fibre and, once you've mastered the knack of managing the short staple, makes a most beautiful soft yarn.

I bought a couple of ewe lambs which had been bred in a children's farm; they were silly tame. 


Don't listen to the money men - they know the price of everything and the value of nothing

Live in a cohousing community with small farm for our own use.  Dairy cow, beef cattle, pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
Re: Shedding sheep breeds
« Reply #25 on: December 27, 2015, 01:54:52 pm »
Your neighbouring sheep keeper would, no doubt, shear your little flock alongside his

Actually, if the neighbour has white sheep, s/he may not be at all enthusiastic about having coloured fleece around on clipping day.  Dark fibres can devalue a good white fleece by tenfold.  We make sure we do my fleece sheep at the end of the day, when all the white fleeces have been safely bagged up.
Don't listen to the money men - they know the price of everything and the value of nothing

Live in a cohousing community with small farm for our own use.  Dairy cow, beef cattle, pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing

DCBBGB

  • Joined Dec 2015
  • Mid Glamorgan
Re: Shedding sheep breeds
« Reply #26 on: December 27, 2015, 03:53:26 pm »
Out of interest, why do you want a self shedding breed?

It is a good question. Purely for maintenance reasons, however, after looking more into it, my Wife and I don't think we will mind a bit of fleece, so having a relatively short coated sheep to start with might just entice us to start spinning!

DCBBGB

  • Joined Dec 2015
  • Mid Glamorgan
Re: Shedding sheep breeds
« Reply #27 on: December 27, 2015, 03:58:24 pm »
Well, they are not really self-shedding but I am very happy to hear that this delightful rare breed has found another supporter  :thumbsup: ;D

Looking forward to be part of helping on our small way

 

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