Tuesday, September 01, 2009

A trip to Sheltering Pines, of course I brought something home!

Due to some terrible predator problems, my dear friend Bill Stearman has decided that life at Willow Garden would be too risky for Lil'Country Antonio Banderos for now. The coywolf has been favoring lambs.
Lil'Country Greyson, a substantially larger and very stout yearling ram, will be making the journey over the border into Canada. Greyson will be contributing to polled Shetlands under the Maple Leaf.
I can't take credit for producing Greyson. He is Carol Bator's breeding, by one of Stephen Rouse's rams, back when she was doing the polled Shetland thing.

As distressed as I am for Bill, I was more than happy to grab "Tony" back again, and this time, I'm not letting him go!

Now this guy....this one I'll take some credit for. I worked to produce Tony, although luck always has something to do with it. :)
It has been a real challenge for me to breed a spotted Shetland, must less a polled one, that I thought was pretty decent. A lot of my past spot carriers (including the hornies of the days of yore) were troubled by coarser fleece, heavy wooly tails, heavy iset, and cowhocks. A LOT of culling got me this far with them, and I've still got a ways to go yet before I'll be content.

Tony's good traits are the result of careful combining Justalit'l, Bluff Country, Underhill, Sommerang, and all the farms that bred the ancestors of those sheep. You just never know what you are going to get by playing "mad scientist" with the Shetland gene pool. It's nice when you get something to be proud of, something to bring you one step closer to your goals.

Tony won't stay here forever & ever. I don't know how his fleece will turn out, and I'm guessing he's only a half poll. I do want to use him heavily.
I'm thinking about using him this fall.....but I'm torn. I need to get more lambs by both Eragon and Silvio. I'd like a full poll ram lamb or two by each of them, then I can move them on to new homes. And I want to use aberrant Twin Springs Bearclaw as well.

Tony is small, sometimes these little ram lambs get beat up by mature ewes, who intimidate them into not performing.
But I'm just dying for more wild, loud, crazy spots, and it's so hard for me to be patient.

Tom and I had a nice visit with Stephen, as always, and we had time to stroll through the pastures and take leisurely looks at his incredible Shetlands.

I spotted this sharp little fellow in Stephen's ram pen. Right away, I noticed his pretty head, curious expression, and delicious, rich fleece.

Sired by FirthOfFifth Thayu, out of Underhill Alix (And I LUV me some Alix.) I'm pretty confident those skinny scurs will pop off, by looking at their base. Perfect little tail. He's slightly hocked, but I'll put him in my back pocket and have a good look at him again as a yearling.

Since I'm struggling with "airplane ears" in my Dillon line, maybe his perky ears will give those airplanes a little lift-off. Thank you Stephen!

I brought this guy home in an attempt to sell him for Stephen. I just don't need another kat, I'm swimming in them.

Another Thayu ram lamb, out of Lil'Country Possum (Pompey X Twinkle, a Dixen daughter). Grey kat with bone knobs. Strong conformation, four square and solid. Good tail. He'll be papered if he sells.
Come see him at Jefferson. $200 (obo) will get you a very nice flock sire.

And let's hope Bill obliterates that coywolf that has been troubling him and his gorgeous Shetlands.


Tammy said...

Love Tony's markings and color. He is a pretty little guy, fleece looks nice too. It's an exciting time of the year as we plan breeding groups!

Juliann said...

Thank you, Tammy. Not as exciting as next spring when we get lambies. :)