Smallholders Insurance from Greenlands

Author Topic: Dartmoor Greyface sheep  (Read 9243 times)

mfc

  • Joined Jul 2012
Dartmoor Greyface sheep
« on: July 22, 2012, 02:26:17 pm »
I've just inherited, from a friend, some DGF sheep, who are lovely! They were shorn (I think in June) before they arrived with us, but with this mini heatwave we are having they seem to be very hot! Even when they come into the shade they are panting.

My question is, should I get the sheared again, or is this a no no in the breed. I don't want them to be uncomfortable. We have suffolk's who are still happy bouncing around the field, but the Greyface's look a little warm :-\

Haylo-peapod

  • Joined Mar 2012
Re: Dartmoor Greyface sheep
« Reply #1 on: July 22, 2012, 07:57:04 pm »
Hi mfc, first of all well done on your acquisition - Greyface Dartmoors are beautiful sheep and very docile. There are quite a few of us GFD owners on this website so you are in good company. This forum is very active and everyone is always willing to offer help and advice.
 
If the sheep were shorn in June they should be absolutely fine.  I would estimate that their fleeces should be around 1-2 inches long by now - does that seem about right? GFD's do tend to pant quite heavily - especially in this warm (finally) weather.
 
They can be shorn again later in the season but probably no later than September but I would normally only expect this to be done on sheep previously shorn very early in the season. Shearing is an expensive business so it is typical to shear only once in a season.
 
 
 

Dougal

  • Joined Jul 2011
  • Port O' Menteith, Stirlingshire
Re: Dartmoor Greyface sheep
« Reply #2 on: July 22, 2012, 08:16:10 pm »
How fat are you GFD's? Fatter sheep struggle much more with the heat. June shorn should be fine, problems usually only occur in sheep shorn early may or earlier and then normally they are ok until mid august so you should be fine.
It's always worse for someone else, so get your moaning done before they start using up all the available symathy!

Blackbird

  • Joined Jul 2012
Re: Dartmoor Greyface sheep
« Reply #3 on: July 23, 2012, 10:48:19 am »
Hi there, we have 3 GFDs in our tiny flock of 5. They are lovely friendly, docile sheep! The older ewe was shorn in June and her fleece is looking fine. The 2 wether lambs are putting on a good deal of fleece and I believe the advice is that they should be shorn in their first year to improve their growth and so they aren't carrying a great weight of wool in the winter. They will be shorn quite soon.
I've noticed they are panting much more than my other 2 sheep ( a shetland and a Hebridean). We've no shelter in the part of the field they are in at the moment (there is a field shelter in the big field but we're waiting to have that cut for hay and the grass is way too long for them). They will be in that field in the winter. In the meantime, I'm considering putting up the gazebo for them, which I know sounds ridiculous but I can't think of a better idea at the moment!  :-\
Where are we going - and why am I in this handcart?

Haylo-peapod

  • Joined Mar 2012
Re: Dartmoor Greyface sheep
« Reply #4 on: July 23, 2012, 11:01:38 am »
The 2 wether lambs are putting on a good deal of fleece and I believe the advice is that they should be shorn in their first year to improve their growth and so they aren't carrying a great weight of wool in the winter. They will be shorn quite soon.

Yes Blackbird you are correct, GFD lambs should be shorn by 31st July. This is largely so that any lambs inspected in the Autumn for registration have grown back sufficient fleece for the inspector to assess. However as you point out there is a welfare issue too as the fleece grows so quickly on this breed and by this time of year any lambs born in the spring are getting pretty hot (now that the rain has stopped) and are also prone to flystrike.

LulaB

  • Joined Apr 2011
Re: Dartmoor Greyface sheep
« Reply #5 on: July 23, 2012, 11:06:30 am »
We love our GFDs!  They are the best natured things.


We have just had our lot shorn and are now looking for a ram to run with them and a few more to supplement our flock.  I am always impressed with their confirmation when they have been shorn.  They are a much heartier sheep than the Jacobs that are with them at the moment.


If anyone has an elderly ram or a young ram lamb they would like to find a home for in Devon, let me know!

plt102

  • Joined Jan 2011
Re: Dartmoor Greyface sheep
« Reply #6 on: July 23, 2012, 11:15:29 am »
We have a ram lamb who we are hoping will pass the grade this autumn. His name is Percy and he is a bonny chap. If he passes the grade, we'll sell him straight away and we'll make sure we post on here. We are keeping his 3 sisters for next year. xx

Hazelwood Flock

  • Joined Sep 2011
  • Dorset.
Re: Dartmoor Greyface sheep
« Reply #7 on: July 23, 2012, 07:07:06 pm »
My lot are shade seeking too in this weather, they do huff and puff - it's a breed thing!
It wouldn't hurt to put up some kind of shade, they will appreciate it.  :thumbsup:
Not every day is baaaaaad!
Pedigree Greyface Dartmoor sheep.

Mallows Flock

  • Joined Apr 2012
  • Shepton mallet
    • Somerset Pet Sitting and Dog Walking
Re: Dartmoor Greyface sheep
« Reply #8 on: July 28, 2012, 10:20:47 pm »
I am thinking of acquiring 2-3 gfd next spring.... anyone know of any going in South West England and how much should I expect to pay for, say, a shearling!
From 3 to 30 and still flocking up!

Hazelwood Flock

  • Joined Sep 2011
  • Dorset.
Re: Dartmoor Greyface sheep
« Reply #9 on: July 28, 2012, 10:25:52 pm »
They are harder to come by in spring, the breed sale is at Exeter market on 31st august and that is where most breeders take their stock. You could keep an eye on the breed website (google Greyface Dartmoor), as some breeders advertise stock on there  :thumbsup:
Not every day is baaaaaad!
Pedigree Greyface Dartmoor sheep.

Mallows Flock

  • Joined Apr 2012
  • Shepton mallet
    • Somerset Pet Sitting and Dog Walking
Re: Dartmoor Greyface sheep
« Reply #10 on: July 28, 2012, 10:30:14 pm »
Hmmm Hazelwood... thanks for that. looks like I may be buying some a lot earlier then-  I will look out for that sale. Thank you!
From 3 to 30 and still flocking up!

Haylo-peapod

  • Joined Mar 2012
Re: Dartmoor Greyface sheep
« Reply #11 on: July 30, 2012, 09:45:34 am »
If you are prepared to travel up to Shrewsbury, Liz Dawson tends to have stock available all year round (she has a large breeding flock) - although they can sometimes be quite pricey depending on how good they are. I've bought ewes off her a few times in the past ranging from 130 to nearly 200.
 
As well as looking for available stock on the website you could always post a 'Wanted' message on the DSBA website when you are ready. Judging by the numbers of GFD owners on this forum you may even have success here  ;D

hobbs

  • Joined Aug 2012
Re: Dartmoor Greyface sheep
« Reply #12 on: August 03, 2012, 08:29:43 pm »
That is a good idea of Haylo-peapod, try posting a messge "WANTED" on the Web Site.we have a lot of good sheep down here in Devon.Also if can come along to the Show and Sale on the 31st Aug at Exeter we are always happy to talk about our sheep and help any one we can enjoy them as much as we do. I myself have breed Dartmoors for a very long time now,and have shown them for almost as long, and I  will never grow tired of learing about them.

 

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