January 4th, 2012
Concern for the Black Welsh Mountain Sheep
Posted by F&S
With the temperatures finally plunging we, Frenchies, get very concerned about all of our farm friends. We have a nice selection of winter coats and the horses and donkeys have winter coats, too. But, what about the Black Welsh Mountain Sheep?
1 Francesca! The temperatures are certainly dropping these days and I feel that it could snow at any minute! Let's check on the sheep to be sure that they are keeping warm!
2 There they are - the Black Welsh Mountain sheep! Maybe we should enter their paddock and ask them if they're warm enough, Franny!
3 Silly Sharkey! The sheep are fine in cold weather. After all, they are covered with wool fleeces, which, by the way, have grown quite thick.
4 Plus, Sharkey, they have this little house where they can find shelter from falling rain and snow!
5 I've also noticed that they have been packing on the pounds lately, as extra body fat helps to keep them warm. The ewes tend to be around 100 pounds and the males, called rams, are usually around 140 pounds.
6 In some breeds of sheep, both sexes have horns, but not in the Black Welsh variety. Rams grow curved horns while the ewes do not. The females are referred to as polled, meaning without horns.
7 Oh Franny, you're right! I almost forgot how thick their fleeces grew last year and how Martha sheared them in the spring! Say, whatever happened to that wool, anyway?
8 Here it is, Sharkey, in the craft room! Look how many skeins of yarn were yielded after spinning!
9 Black Welsh mountain sheep produce black, short, and dense wool. If the sheep are exposed to a lot of sunlight, their coats turn a reddish shade, called Cochddu.
10 The fleece is first cleaned before the plying process, or when two or more pieces of wool are twisted together in a spinner. A strand of yarn is really a bunch of small pieces of wool fiber wound together.
11 I have an idea! Let's get out the knitting needles and ask Martha to knit us some sweaters with this warm wool so we can stay toasty like the sheep!
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