Our livestock plans for this year were pretty ambitious but I’m happy to say that with the exception of bees, which are proving very tricky to come by, we have ticked everything off our list.
This week it was sheep!
I did a crazy 11 hour day on the ferry travelling around all the islands so I would already be on board when the sheep were loaded. I checked on them every time we pulled into one of the islands and I was permitted onto the car deck where the trailer was with them and they were very calm for the duration.
I spent some time on board catching up with folk from the other islands, visitors and the ferry staff, read a book and did some crochet, gazed at the sea and stood for a while outside when I needed some fresh air. It was a long day…
When we finally reached Rum Ady brought the car on board to tow the trailer off and with a brief stop so people at the pier could peer in and meet the sheep we headed for the croft. Fortunately the river was low enough for us to cross and drive all the way to the croft. The first patch of ground we have fenced off for the sheep is just inside the croft, so Ady was able to catch them one at a time and carry them into their new pen.
They all settled in straight away and started grazing, precisely why we have them!
We have three girls – all this years lambs so still babies really. They are Lleyn crossed with Cheviot and are really pretty white faced, white fleeced sheep. They will be great for grazing and for their wool and next year if we have kept them on Rum with our unique climate and soil conditions we will probably breed from them meaning lambs in 2018. But that is a long way off and we have much to learn about being shepherds before then.
In other news bramble picking continues apace – this afternoons pickings were turned into bramble and rum jam – I can’t quite believe I have not made that particular flavour combination before…