lundi 28 mai 2007

Fairy Sheep

Such pretty little sheep


This afternoon Honey gave birth to a little girl, as Honey hasn't been well this was a rather unexpected birth and I'm pleased to say so far so good everyone is looking well and fingers crossed, the next few days are always such a worry. So that just leaves the rather portly Mugette to produce. How fitting if she gave birth on the first of May. May day is traditionaly celebrated here with a posy of lily of the valley ( muget). It looks as though little April ( her temporary name) may possibly have a home to goto already. It would be good as I won't be able to keep her she is too closely related to Dumpling. I will be pleased when all the babies are born and I can put the little troop back together at the moment Dumpling has been separated off ( with a friend) and hes none to happy about it.

dimanche 27 mai 2007

Egault at Spered Breizh

Egaults online Breeding from the open flock book

Egault / Doddy
Bred By Mr and Mrs Du Four

DOB 06.07.2004
Colour Noire Brunissante

New boy on the block

Courtesy of Monsieur and Madame Dufour a few pics of the latest arrival chez nous. This fella is a real beauty for now you'll have to make do with his baby pics. Grown up pics in the next post.

Dodu and his mum Douce

Teeny little guy!

samedi 26 mai 2007

Find me a name please

This little girl was born Tuesday 22..05.07 she needs a name I have discounted things like Lily Bianca Blanche or Neige but would love some good suggestions her full name will be
xxxxx at Spered Breizh look forward to your suggestions

White Ouessant Sheep

Isn't this guy just fantastic!


DOB Jan 2005
Colour Noire Brunissante

This is Gary the lamb, hand reared by Patrick from the age of one week.
As a hand reared or cade lamb, hes very friendly, a little too friendly at times! Gary is our resident wether, adored by everyone, hes good with the girls and gentle with the lambs. He is also the Grandaddy of the current line. Photos of Gary as a youngster courtesy of Joe, Lesley and Patrick

Pictured here at the age of two and a half years meeting and greeting one of our visitors. Photos

vendredi 25 mai 2007

Shearing your Ouessant Sheep*

Yours truly shearing one of the Ouessant girls . Now I don't get any marks for technique but shearing your sheep is important and necessary. Lambs don't need to be trimmed in their first year but come the begining of the second year May June is a good time although I have been known to start in April you should arrange for them to be sheared or look at doing them yourself not as hard as it sounds but beware if you didn't have a bad back to start with it won't be long...............

Here I am actually using an old pair of dog clippers oster A5 's to be exact and I have a number 15 blade on although a 10 would do just as nicely. Its a good time to do a routine maintenance check so as well as checking teeth and ears and getting a good look at whats going on under the fleece, you will be able to do their feet and worm if its in part of your programme.

I keep the fleece for hand spinners, so like to do a tidy job not to mention I get a certain amount of satisfaction out of it. Getting a shearer in needn't be expensive depending on the number of sheep you have but if you have just a couple you may need to take them to a friend and get a decent number done to make the cost of shearing economical.

Here is the finshed article.

jeudi 17 mai 2007

Irish Gold*

Now this might not seem like a lot, but in this part of the world a bit of bacon is a very hard thing to come by. Courtesy of my Irish visitors here is some genuine Irish Gold! Yum I am drooling at the thought of a bacon sarny. Now to the visitors; what wonderful lovely people and it was so nice to meet a couple of great people who really wanted to meet and greet some real Ouessants.
Gary and Dumpling lead the meet and greet session ( always ready with a warm welcome) and of course the adorable little Beau who is turning into a little devil ( literally!) The girls are always a bit shy around strangers but the little tribe of lambs were like cats prancing and dancing around. Jo was very helpful and we madly agreed to shear a sheep. Twiglet got nominated, (greediest sheep) so Jo went away with a freshly shorn genuine Ouessant fleece. I have promised her Muguettes when she is shorn as there is a definate difference in the fleece and it will be interesting to hear Jo's thoughts and also a comparison of the two.
My shearing technique is I think fairly unique but I hope the end result is still a good useable fleece and a tidy shorn sheep; Jo's blog is always a good read and I've just noticed the pics are up!! wow I LOVE them. Celtic memory yarns
more later when I've had a chance to check out the photos Pria looks just FAB and gary soo handsome!

mardi 15 mai 2007

Its arrived!*

I sent Dumplings fleece to the US. I heard this morning it has arrived and its new owner has fallen in love. great news! and I am so looking forward to hearing more . Next to be shorn will be Prima probably and she is also a first shear. I have ear marked her fleece ( if its as good as it looks) to a lovely lady in France who is really looking forward to spinning a Ouessant fleece. I will have one or two more to find homes for in the coming weeks. The youngsters born this year are already fascinating with what appears to be two types of fleece from the different lines. I can't wait to see how they grow. watch this space for photos of Primas fleece in the next week or so.

dimanche 13 mai 2007

Baby Beau

He doesn't need a bottle his mum looks after him perfectly well but its all part of the fun of keeping sheep.

lundi 7 mai 2007

Local talent

I came across this fella today, rather handsome Ouessant ram isn't he.

Visitors, introducing Stella

This is little Stella nee April in the arms of her new mum to be. As soon as she is old enough to leave the flock she will be going to a wonderful new home along with another of the Ouessant flock. I know they will be absolutely doted on. Don't you just love an happy ending:-))

dimanche 6 mai 2007

All done

For this year everyone has lambed and now I need to decide just how to look forward to the next year, one or two exciting additions to the breeding programme in the pipeline but more about them a little later. For now this years progeny.

Sire Dumpling. Dam Rosie
Rosie produced a pair of lovely twins Bubbles and Squeak.
Bubbles has already been castrated but will be staying more about him later.
Squeak is just adorable. The tiniest of lambs but Rosie is such a good and experienced mother she needed no help from me. I have very high hopes for Squeak having seen Rosies breeding previously.

Sire Dumpling Dam Twiglet.
Twiglet also produced twins ( its been a bumper year!) Bella and Beau who remains entire and will be staying for the moment. Bella another exciting prospect who will be staying

Sire Dumpling and Dam Honey
Honeys lamb was an unexpected bonus she has turned out to be a real beauty.Stella as she is now named has a wonderful and loving home to go to but I am hoping in time to have one of her lambs.

Sire Dumpling Dam MugetteMugette always produces surprises, this year is no exception, Guiness a nice ram lamb unusual texture to his fleece we will wait and see. I have an interesting mating planned for her next time.

So that makes six healthy lambs from five ewes. Prima will be mated next time to a different ram and I hope she has an easier time of the birth.

I hope to have more news in the not too distant future don't forget to check out the photos as they grow.

and finally

The birth of Mugettes long awaited baby and a little too late for May day but whose counting. Guiness a nice ram lamb was born without any fuss on friday morning. I'll see if I can get some pics a little later on. Since all the babies have been born and no one is in danger of Dumpling presuming anyone to be on heat I have put everyone back together. Peace and tranquility is restored. Both Dumpling and Gary are good with the lambs , well they don't bother with them and the lambs are far too busy charging around and generally behaving like little hoodlums to take much notice.

We've had quite a number of visitors in the past week and everyone has ooed and aaahed over the babies and of course Gary whose charm and amiable personality wins everyone over. I really must find a pic of him too.

Another bit of good news the fleece has finally arrived in the US initial reports are GOOD! I can't wait for all the detail. Its so exciting being able to share the sheep with other people.

The Ouessant Sheep originates from the island of Ouessant, part of a tiny archipelago just off the north coast of Finistere, Brittany. The island of terror as it was known to some, was swept by the full force of the atlantic’s weather, the hardy sheep adapted to survive on poor grazing from salty clifftop meadows. It was the women of the island that raised the sheep, renowned for their black wool to weave into cloth known locally as berlinge and their meat with its sweet and delicate taste.

La race "Mouton d'Ouessant" est originaire de l’île d’’Ouessant qui fait parti d’un petit archipel au large du Finistère, Bretagne. L’île de l'épouvante comme c'était connu par certains était balayé par les intempéries de l’atlantique, ces moutons rustiques s'adaptaient à survivre sur les pâturages pauvres des falaises salées. C’était les femmes de l’île qui élevaient les moutons réputés pour leur laine noire à tisser « la berlinge » une étoffe régionale et leur viande avec un goût doux et délicat.

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