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Author Topic: Moving sheep  (Read 3589 times)

Hevxxx99

  • Joined Sep 2012
Moving sheep
« on: February 11, 2016, 06:12:00 pm »
I have my sheep on a field that has no road access.  It's several hundred yards across the moors and accessable by 4x4 only.  All winter, I have been waiting for it to get dry or frozen enough for me to get a trailer up to take my ewes off but it just hasn't happened. 

The situation is getting rather urgent now as they are due to lamb in March and I really want them home before then.

Has anyone got any ideas about how to get sheep from field to trailer?  I reckon I can get it up the track to within about 100 yards of the gate, but any closer is still more akin to marshland than moorland.  I got a couple off with a rope halter, but I think it was very stressful for them.  Is there a tried and tested method of moving sheep individually? They're a bit big to carry....

fsmnutter

  • Joined Oct 2012
  • Fettercairn, Aberdeenshire
Re: Moving sheep
« Reply #1 on: February 11, 2016, 06:52:49 pm »
Can you set up a run from field to trailer with hurdles and push them through?

mab

  • Joined Mar 2009
  • carmarthenshire
Re: Moving sheep
« Reply #2 on: February 11, 2016, 07:17:22 pm »
similar to fsm's idea but if you can borrow/find 200yds of (electric) sheep netting it might be easier to carry, and just have enough hurdles for a pen at the end where they may pile up and push the netting over.


otherwise ask around your neighbours to 'borrow' some shepherds with dogs? This weather's beyond the pale and  your neighbours may be sympathetic and help out - Or they may even volunteer a better solution.

shep53

  • Joined Jan 2011
  • Dumfries & Galloway
Re: Moving sheep
« Reply #3 on: February 11, 2016, 07:25:30 pm »
Could you take your trailer as far as is safe ,  then build  a pen  with hurdles/ gates / fence net / electric net or similar  then using a feed bag walk the sheep down to the pen .   

Big Light

  • Joined Aug 2011
    • Facebook
Re: Moving sheep
« Reply #4 on: February 11, 2016, 07:41:41 pm »
Are they hungry and bucket trained - rattle the bucket and get them to follow if its possible then throw the food in the trailer or a pen next to the trailer
« Last Edit: February 11, 2016, 07:43:16 pm by Big Light »

Black Sheep

  • Joined Sep 2015
  • Briercliffe
    • Monk Hall Farm
Re: Moving sheep
« Reply #5 on: February 11, 2016, 08:36:59 pm »
No idea if this would be feasible in reality, but could you make a small square pen out of four long hurdles. Feed a few sheep into the pen and then with four people at the corners, lift the pen just off the ground and walk it down to the trailer group by group? Not going to be particularly quick but wouldn't need a lot of hurdles.

Womble

  • Joined Mar 2009
  • Stirlingshire, Central Scotland
Re: Moving sheep
« Reply #6 on: February 11, 2016, 09:07:40 pm »
I've done something similar to that before Black Sheep. We used a long thing rectangular hurdle pen, and squished the sheep up one end of it, before removing the rear hurdles and moving them to the front, so the pen gradually 'walked' forwards. It took some time, but it was safe!
"All fungi are edible. Some fungi are only edible once." -Terry Pratchett

Hevxxx99

  • Joined Sep 2012
Re: Moving sheep
« Reply #7 on: February 11, 2016, 09:10:57 pm »
Interesting ideas! I'm going to see how close I can get the trailer tomorrow and take some sheep netting with me. I've got a pen and spare hurdles near the gate already, so a combination of a run and a bucket to rattle might work!

Fingers crossed! 

mowhaugh

  • Joined Jul 2013
  • Scottish Borders
    • Facebook
Re: Moving sheep
« Reply #8 on: February 11, 2016, 10:25:30 pm »
Just accidentally clicked on your profile, Hevxxx99, and saw where you live, beautiful place, I have friends near you and my children love the Danby Moor Centre. Good luck with the moving.

Porterlauren

  • Joined Apr 2014
Re: Moving sheep
« Reply #9 on: February 11, 2016, 11:55:45 pm »
Dog . . . .

landroverroy

  • Joined Oct 2010
Re: Moving sheep
« Reply #10 on: February 12, 2016, 08:56:44 am »
We put our trailer on a 4 x 4 tractor when the land is too wet for anything else. Failing that - a dog.
I'm presuming you don't have a dog now, or you wouldn't have a problem. So it might be worth getting one for future moves.
A lot of people think that a working sheepdog needs constantly working - not true! It's basically a dog like any other, that enjoys being with you, but is very useful when you want to gather sheep.  We only have 20 ewes now, but I wouldn't be without a dog when I want to do anything with them.
« Last Edit: February 12, 2016, 09:03:01 am by landroverroy »
Rules are made:
  for the guidance of wise men
  and the obedience of fools.

Hevxxx99

  • Joined Sep 2012
Re: Moving sheep
« Reply #11 on: February 12, 2016, 08:12:46 pm »
I do have a dog, but she's a bit keen and not always very attentive, so moving sheep across open moorland and into a (small) trailer would be beyond her.

I got the first batch loaded today though.  :excited: With a lot of slipping and sliding and unhitching and re-hitching and grim determination, I managed to get the trailer to the gateway by going across the moor rather than along the track. A few hurdles, a bucket and a helpful assistant meant I was able to load them with very little effort. Once I'd got there!

Snow due tomorrow evening, followed by yet more rain, so very relieved to have them back home now.

It is a beautiful place, Mowhaugh. The moors centre is just up the road and round the corner from my fields.

 

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