N for Nelly

N for Nelly

Black points are a preferred in the Wiltipoll breed but we are not so sure about these markings. This little girl appeared during the 2012 spring lambing and was promptly christened Nelly. She probably has a future as a pirate or perhaps in the “Return of Zorro”.

N for Nelly

December 23, 2012Permalink

Our boys

Our Boys

Our first ram, Roger, was a little too woolly for our liking so early in 2012 he was retired to a neighbour’s farm. Randolf, our other Wiltshire Horn/Dorper cross, seems to have more of the Wiltshire in him and sheds cleanly. He has produced some beautiful lambs, mostly polls. We also have Barry from Berwick (a pure Dorper, with some saddle), Doug the Dorper (a good clean shedder), and Fred (our Wiltipoll ram lamb from the Gee Tee Stud at Gunbower in northern Victoria). When we join our maiden 2011 ewes in March next year, we hope he will bring to our flock the good Wiltshire characteristics we admire, but without the horns. He has adjusted well to the change from the drier, open landscape near Echuca to his new home in our green hills. Currently he is hanging out with the older rams and two of our young 2011 rams we have for sale. Recently they have made themselves useful clearing some long grass in the “garden” behind our house.

The Gardners web

December 18, 2012Permalink

In the beginning

In the beginning…

“We just need a few sheep to eat the grass under the trees, so let’s see if we can find “other people’s sheep” to do the job.” All well and good until the “other people” took their sheep away and convinced us we could produce a quality meat sheep on our hilly Glen Alvie property. Five lambing seasons later and we are starting to think of ourselves as sheep farmers.

Our initial breeding ewes were a Wiltshire Horn/White Dorper cross, which conveniently sheds fleece each spring – no shearing, crutching or dipping required. The wool of course is no use to us; however all the local birds are very appreciative. We purchased two rams which were also Wiltshire Horn/White Dorper crosses and we have since added two Dorper rams and a Wiltipoll ram.

After lots of trial and error (too shaggy, sheep with horns, and so on), we are refining our flock to breed clean shedding, poll (no horns!) sheep that are closer to the Wiltshire Horn in characteristic. Follow this blog to see how we progress on our journey.

December 17, 2012Permalink