Just got back up from bringing the sheep and Rose down to the ElectroNet. When we go down, the goats come along as well. Often it’s only Rain and Dawn who come with us, but today, everyone, including Dusty came along for the walk. I have to trick Rose to get her into the ElectroNet (which she has the utmost respect for) and staying with the sheep. She’s much more bonded to the goats and doesn’t like staying with the sheep. I always bring some really tasty food and make sure Rose is good and hungry. As soon as everyone (including Rose and the goats) are in the ElectroNet, I give Rose her food and while she’s eating, close everyone in. So far, it’s worked well. Getting Rain and Dawn out of the ElectroNet is no problem, they follow me out like dogs. Luna and Penny are a different matter. This was the first time I had to get Luna, Penny and Dusty out. I’ve been working with communicating to Gel that I need “this one” moved and he’s slowly getting it.
This morning, Rain, Dawn and Penny came out on their own, but I had to send Gel in for Luna and Dusty. Luna challenged Gel a bit, but came out within a few seconds and we all headed back.
As I write this, it is only 25 degrees out. Yesterday was miserable!!! The wind was high and it blew right through you. I was going to spread the rabbit manure, but ended up coming back inside and watching television for a couple of hours. It felt funny on a Sunday to be lazing around, but I suppose there is no harm in taking it easy every once in a while. Time enough to get everything done. I hope to get the rabbit manure spread this morning so I can get the bags out to the curb for trash pick-up. Even though it’s cold, the wind died down so it will be reasonably tolerable to be out there in a few hours.
I don’t know how people live in extremely cold climates. I think I would die if I had to go out to care for animals on a daily basis in extreme cold. Then again, I’m sure I’ll be complaining about the heat in a few months. I want it to be 70 degrees during the day and 50 at night every day, with rain every three or four days. Wonder if I’ll get my wish.
I just made an appointment at the local slaughter house to have one two-year old Dorper wether and one of last year’s wethers (still considered a lamb since he’s not a year old yet) slaughtered and processed. I am going to use the lamb for human consumption and the older one for the dogs and cats. The slaughter house charges $45 to slaughter which includes skinning, gutting and quartering and it may be worth it to have them do this particular wether as he’s a big boy, well over 100 pounds. While I am more than capable of slaughtering him myself, given his size, it may be better to have them do it. I am not at the point where I can eat something that I slaughtered so I’ll have the processor do the one that I’m going to eat. They charge $.40/pound to process and package the meat. I’ll bet the lamb will dress out close to 50 pounds. I’ll have them do lamb chops and grind the rest of the meat for lamb burger. Whatever is left over from that will go to the dogs. I have a few people wanting grass fed lambs so this will be a way to see how much the lambs will dress out at and the total cost so I can price them accordingly. Wally and I are not going to keep any of the ram lambs and only a few of the ewe lambs from this year. They are all growing really well so in a few months, we should have some that can be sold.