Shearing is an important part of raising sheep, for many reasons. This time of year, we shear the ewes, prior to lambing. Although it’s a lot of work, we look forward to this day. We rearrange some of the pens inside the barn to facilitate the flow of animals through the process. This year, we had a different shearing crew because our usual shearer was unable to do it due to health issues. We are used to having a 1 man show, and we all pitch in to get the job done (get the lambs to him, pick up the wool, pack the wool). This year, he referred us to a 4-man crew. It was a lot easier on us (although the grandkids were upset they didn’t get to pack wool!), and quite entertaining to watch! Three of them sheared at one time – each with their own ewe. The 4th man picked up the wool and packed it with their homemade wool packing set up.
Although it make look like the ewes would be uncomfortable, they are actually just fine. Putting them in this position keeps them from moving around too much and allows the shearer to quickly and efficiently clip the wool.
After it was all over, the wool is packed into these bags (picture below) and sold.
A good job well done!