Sheepy-wise it has not been a bad winter so far. The grass kept growing until very late in the year and here in the East, we have avoided the very wet weather seen in the south west, and down in parts of Cumbria. The snow has arrived in the last few days and the sheep have access to shelter from the winds.
Shetland sheep are hardy creatures and cope with cold wet weather fairly well. They are now on ad lib hay, as well as having access to mineral buckets and occasional hard feeding. They have been treated to prevent liver fluke and have had their pre-winter vitamin drench.
The tups were in amongst the ewes from Remembrance Sunday until the weekend before Christmas, and we have gathered together the tups that we loaned out to people as far as Skye and the North East. We borrowed two tups this year: a handsome white boy and a stunning wee grey tup lamb with the softest fleece I have ever come across.
We currently have a batch of ewes and ewe lambs in isolation awaiting transport to a farmer in Northern Ireland, and some ewes who are soon due to head off to a new breeder in Orkney.
Woolly-wise we are busy applying to various wool events and working on our business plan for the coming months. We aim to have new wool supplies ready for our spring events, and we will publish details of these on our website as soon as we know them.
The last few months have generally been spent catching up on knitting and weaving projects, finishing off those WIPs that have been hanging around the house.
We are also working on some new projects that we aim to launch later this year.