Diversifying with sheep question

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Ky cowboy

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We have some smaller pastures that we have been cutting for hay for several years that are on a different farm. Thinking about buying some sheep to run on it, I've looked at several different breeds mainly wool sheep. Dorset seems to be my choice so far but wanting opinion . Thanks
 
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Ky cowboy

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I don't care about the wool, the hair sheep I've seen haven't impressed me at all and look to much like goats. For the small number that I'll be running I'll shear them just to clean them up and discard of the wool.
 

TexasBred

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Ky cowboy":26nl1vdk said:
I don't care about the wool, the hair sheep I've seen haven't impressed me at all and look to much like goats. For the small number that I'll be running I'll shear them just to clean them up and discard of the wool.
Don't sound like you really want opinions. Already got your mind made up :???:
 
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Ky cowboy

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TexasBred":rxu0waph said:
Ky cowboy":rxu0waph said:
I don't care about the wool, the hair sheep I've seen haven't impressed me at all and look to much like goats. For the small number that I'll be running I'll shear them just to clean them up and discard of the wool.
Don't sound like you really want opinions. Already got your mind made up :???:


No, it's not like that at all. I just prefer the wool breeds vs hair sheep. Except maybe the dorpher but I haven't seen them in person. There's just not many options in my area other than kathaidians.
 

greybeard

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My b-i-l has some kind of hair sheep. 6-7 right now. They don't seem to be able to keep up with the grass growth--he still has to mow. I don't know the exact breed but they are some offshoot of dorpers.
Nasty looking things tho and he still has to do some shearing anyway once the weather turns warm, and they stink all to be dam.
 

Aaron

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jerry27150":132dmbc8 said:
sheep are fine, but are always looking for a way to die

I assumed he had seen cattle die in every way possible and was looking for an animal that is even more inventive at it. See quite a few cattle people get a few sheep nowadays and are amazed at how fast and easily they die.
 

greybeard

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jerry27150":1pq3nrw5 said:
sheep are fine, but are always looking for a way to die
Yep, "born looking for a way to die" is how it was explained to me.

Goats aren't much of an improvement, but they do BBQ better than pasture maggots.
 

ddd75

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hair sheep are hardy good animals depending on the breeder you buy them from. The bad part is most people are hobby yuppies who worm and baby these sheep everyday. You put them in a range enviroment and they die.

I had 180 hair ewes and never wormed or did anything to any of them. I had some pretty good loses the first year and after that everyone was pretty hardy.

Right now price are still really good with a nice 80 lb lambing bringing aroun 200.00 ..

I got out of them but as I'm getting back in.


The thing I found out is if you continually let them graze they will kill all your orchard grass.
 

ddd75

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greybeard":r2p6dy82 said:
jerry27150":r2p6dy82 said:
sheep are fine, but are always looking for a way to die
Yep, "born looking for a way to die" is how it was explained to me.

Goats aren't much of an improvement, but they do BBQ better than pasture maggots.


I had 120 nanny goats and a goat is always looking for a way to die. They are terrible mothers and beat each other.. beat the kids.. get every disease imaginable. they are a terrible animal. these were kiko goats btw.

I did buy some spanish goats from a old ranch in texas that were extremely nice and good goats.. those would be the only goats I'd ever buy again.
 

callmefence

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Hair sheep And Spanish x goats are both very hardy and moneymakers.
I promise they are not looking for a way to die. Predators are a problem and the biggest reason we got out. I just had to much to do and something had to go.

Bringing sheep in every night was a big chore. So went the sheep

My biggest question is do you have a auction near enough to market your lambs.? Also hair sheep will eat brush, weeds, briars etc. They are generally used to utilize sorry brushy pasture. Running them on good ground away from the house seems backwards to me.

I would stay away from wool sheep
 

ddd75

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callmefence":226p35u9 said:
Hair sheep And Spanish x goats are both very hardy and moneymakers.
I promise they are not looking for a way to die. Predators are a problem and the biggest reason we got out. I just had to much to do and something had to go.

Bringing sheep in every night was a big chore. So went the sheep

My biggest question is do you have a auction near enough to market your lambs.? Also hair sheep will eat brush, weeds, briars etc. They are generally used to utilize sorry brushy pasture. Running them on good ground away from the house seems backwards to me.

I would stay away from wool sheep


my sheep would come in as soon as it started getting dark to the pasture in front of my house. they were trained pretty good. I never had to get them.
 

ddd75

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everything you read says how good they are at eating brush / weeds..

they might take a nibble out of some brush and a nibble of a weed, but they are 80%+ on grass if its available.
 
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Ky cowboy

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This pasture is at my dad's house it's only 5 acres and aggravating to haul cattle up there back and forth. To steep to bale bale for hay. We already have plenty of facilities at this farm and a big barn we plan on wintering them in. There are several auctions very close that have auctions for sheep. A guy I work with raises hair sheep and says he does very well.
 

farmerjan

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We run about 50-75 White Texas Dall sheep. Hair breed, and we raise them for the horns that the rams have to sell to hunting preserves. Any that don't make the cut as lambs as far as the horn development goes, go to the lamb market. Used to have horned dorsets years ago but the wool market got so bad that we just couldn't justify the shearing costs. We like the horned sheep. That said.... the dorpers are very meaty, had a friend that raised them and we have discussed maybe adding a few but the biggest thing is fences that aren't good enough to keep them in on rented pastures. The Dall's are a semi wild breed and can be hard to handle although the ewes are tamer than the rams. That is the way they need to be since the rams will go on preserves to be shot and they don't need to be coming up to the hunters. The biggest problem we have is #1 - predators ...dogs, coyotes after the lambs. And dogs that have gotten in and run pregnant ewes and they abort. We use llamas for predator control. #2- worm load here as it is too moist an environment and although we are using more resistant females as breeders, there is still a problem with worms. #3 - foot rot. Again in part due to the wetter conditions as sheep do better in arid, dry conditions. And we are breeding the ones that tend to need less foot trimming and slowly getting rid of the ones that need alot of constant attention.

If you know a guy at work who does well with them, why not some sort of a partner deal? Learn from him and decide if you want to be bothered with them. Or even outright renting the land to him?
 

pricefarm

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Ky cowboy":21n9vl22 said:
I don't care about the wool, the hair sheep I've seen haven't impressed me at all and look to much like goats. For the small number that I'll be running I'll shear them just to clean them up and discard of the wool.
There are good katahdin sheep just hard to find around here. Most of the one you see are maybe 100# ewes. When i had sheep I preferred a katahdin ewe over a dorper. My ewes where 200# ewes, big and stocky. The Katahdins where's excellent mothers and the lambs would hit the ground running.
 

farmerjan

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Our Dall sheep are very good mothers and if you don't catch the lamb within 12 hours to tag....forget it. Have to get them all in a catch pen as they are fast and very active. They aren't like the commercial wool sheep that are way too dependent on man to take care of them. Those are looking for a way to die it seemed. Aside from the foot problems and the worm loads, they are pretty hardy overall. The friends that had the dorpers said they were pretty self sufficient, they may have had some other crossed in them. Some of the Dall's we have, have had some wool sheep crossed in them and so we get a few with some wool but it will usually shed off as it is not dominant.
Our big thing is really fences, and keeping the llamas as guardians.
 

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