Friday 12 October 2012

The Perfect Specimens

A sheep is a sheep is a sheep I suppose, if one is not really into sheep-breeding.   And of course, the prime reason for breeding sheep has really got to be to sell their meat, and once they are on the butcher's slab they all look the same.

But today, visiting a farmer friend, we had a real taste of perfect pedigree specimens.   The friend is a Swaledale fanatic and really lives and breathes Swaledales.   Next week there is a tup sale and today he was getting his tups ready for the sale.  Grooming them, trimming their fleeces and their hooves, generally smartening them up.

They are quite nasty individuals and no light weights, so that they have to be separated.   Each pen (which holds two or three at the most) is surrounded by carpet-covered fencing and electric fencing to stop them getting to each other and creating mayhem.  The carpet, of course, is to stop them actually seeing one another.

I must say it was fascinating to see them all.  I will report back when the sale is over, so that you can see the sort of prices they fetch.


angryparsnip said...

Love your fist paragraph ! So funny "on the butchers slap they all look the same".
I think they are very handsome sheep with the curved horns but those same curved horns could do lots of damage.

cheers, parsnip

Heather said...

I always assumed sheep to be rather docile creatures, but this one does have a sneaky look in his eye. He's very handsome with those splendid horns.

Irene said...

We call the males "rams" and they aren't as sweet and docile as the ewes of course. They can't afford to be, they want to get all the ewes for themselves and produce offspring. I'd hate to get in the way of those horns.

Mary said...

What a beauty! And i love his horns too. And no, i don't notice docility, (is that a word? :) ) when i look at him either. Quite a gleam in the eyes! He's definitely no slouch.. :D

Gerry Snape said...

gosh how ...well is scary the right word ? but grand and obviously knows his importance!!

it's me said...

Rams can be incredibly destructive. Ours, named Rambo by my children, would repeatedly back up and "ram" the side of the barn until he broke all the boards.

And no one should ever turn their back on him, for he was coming after them!

His eyes would get a wild look, and we knew he was up to no good.

Cloudia said...

thanks for the intro

Have a Good Weekend,
Aloha from Waikiki
Comfort Spiral

> < } } ( ° >

Bovey Belle said...

They look splendid specimens and I hope they reach good prices. I love to see the rams at our local show - various breeds - and all with fire in their eye!

I had to smile about the carpet barriers to stop them protecting their territory : )

MorningAJ said...

What kind of farmer's wife thinks that all breeds look the same on the butcher's slab? Only if you're buying mince! My butcher has shown me how to recognise some breeds, even when they are in his display cabinet. (It's easier with pigs though.)

Good meat shows through. (I'm just off to the farmers' market this morning.)

Dave King said...

They don't sound like sheep at all - more like something wild from the circus! I look forward to hearing the next installment.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Prices will be reported when I see them in our local farming paper - eagerly awaited by all farmers after the sale - they like to see how much their neighbours are making!!!
Thanks for calling.