Category: helpful stuff

Sheep Behaving Badly

I have some entertaining pictures of recent sheep activity. After 45 days in the barn, the ewes express their restlessness with weird stunts. Activity #1 – Fighting BFL 129 Amelia and Border Leicester 1736 go head to head, with our resident ram lamb goading them on. Sheep flocks have a hierarchy, and apparently these girls do not agree about where they stand in the … Read More Sheep Behaving Badly

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Bottle Lamb Shenanigans

This is a Covid-19-free post, so read and enjoy! We have a whole passel of bottle lambs in 2020. We have the two remaining ewe lambs from the quadruplet situation. We have a BFL ram lamb who never caught on to nursing his mother. We have a Border ram lamb who was rejected due to having sharp teeth (we fixed the teeth but couldn’t … Read More Bottle Lamb Shenanigans

Considering Sheep?

I often meet folks who are considering getting sheep. Many bashfully tell me that they only want a small flock and some seem to worry that they are wasting my time asking questions. Questions are never a waste of time! Judging from the kinds of questions that I see in sheep groups on Facebook, more people should ask all of their questions first and … Read More Considering Sheep?

Pregnancy Checks and some Updates

With temperatures in the low single digits today, we are surely in the thick of winter.  Last week, we finally received the replacement barn-ends that we ordered after the back of the barn tore in half during the Halloween storm.  Unfortunately, Matt and I concluded that we won’t actually complete the repairs until spring.  Neither of us want to battle stiff, uncooperative materials in … Read More Pregnancy Checks and some Updates

Two Old Women

I’ve been sharing a series of pictures of ewes in the flock to help show people the individuals in the web of stories in the flock.  I am enjoying sharing these images – I want people to know how we see our ewes as singular beings with their own personalities. We have two ewes who are a little extra-special, though. Their names are K … Read More Two Old Women

Review: “Fibershed” by Rebecca Burgess

I just finished reading Fibershed: Growing a Movement of Farmers, Fashion Activists and Makers for a New Fiber Economy.  Reading this book was like reading a book I wish I had written – I am completely on board with the author’s concerns about our current clothing system and vision for a new one.  I hope this book increases awareness of the value of local fibercraft. … Read More Review: “Fibershed” by Rebecca Burgess

Our Bountiful Wild Harvest

At Cloverworks Farm, we raise lamb as an enterprise plus chicken and ducks for our own use.  We also have some wild foods on the farm – you may recall that a few months ago, we were hastily picking a variety of berries.  Now is the harvest time for our apples, crabapples and rosehips. We are overrun with apples this year.  In all seriousness, … Read More Our Bountiful Wild Harvest

Lamb Enterprise Calculator

I recently read a conversation on the Vermont Sheep and Goat Association listserv on the topic of calculating a profitable lamb production enterprise.  Some producers hadn’t calculated their production costs, while others weren’t sure what market prices looked like. For our lamb enterprise, I calculated our cost of production and then did a bit of research on comparable products.  Comparable products are lamb produced … Read More Lamb Enterprise Calculator

Berry Picking

Many days leave me feeling utterly spoiled.  Even with a huge bruise on my leg from handling a lamb who didn’t want to be medicated and scratches on my arms from moving through rough brush, I feel like the most fortunate person alive. After a long day of work, I took a moment to walk slowly around my property, gathering berries.  Black raspberry season … Read More Berry Picking

Our BFL Yarn is Here

I am so happy with the BFL yarn that came back from Battenkill Fibers this year. In past years, our BFL clip has been too small for me to send it to a mill.  Bluefaced Leicesters are bred to have light fleeces.  In the UK, this was done with the idea of reducing the fleecy bulk of Cheviots and Scottish Blackface ewes.  The ewes … Read More Our BFL Yarn is Here

Riblets

Raise your hand if you like Barbecue. Alright… Raise your hand if you like the crispy parts where the sauce and the fat melt into tasty meat.  Is that your favorite bit?  Would you nibble on bones all day? Congrats, you are my barbecue twin.  Because that’s my favorite bit.  I’m all about texture in food, and the crispy/juicy contrast has to be my … Read More Riblets

Lamb Frustration

This year, I have a few naughty lambs. Border Leicester #125, who is a really pretty ewe lamb, and her sidekick Border Leicester #151 persistently wiggle their way out of our electric fencing.  Sometimes, Border Leicester #122 joins in. For a while, it really was my fault.  We only had a 1 joule charger on a large amount of fence, and the charge simply … Read More Lamb Frustration