Sunday, March 13, 2011

Rain, drafting, counting and branding

At last it has rained.  It had to be today just because we had loads of drafting to do.  It rained so hard it soaked through coat, body warmer and jumper.  I was wearing waterproof trousers though so the bottom half stayed dry.  Christopher had the sheep gathered in from the paddock and into the drafting race by 7am.  First draft was a three way draft, flock ewes straight ahead, the best of the ewe lambs to the right and the cast ewes, wether lambs and any ewe lambs that looked too small for the abattoir to the left.  The first draft of 2,000 was finished by 9:50am.  Sheep were running really well so despite the rain it was pretty easy going.  We then had to come home and have a change of clothes.  The second draft was to put the ewe lambs through again  to get this years replacements.  We kept the best 303, the remaining 100 or so then went in with the wether lambs for the abattoir.  Ended up with 448 lambs for the abattoir and 79 cast ewes.  About 20 didn't make the grade either because they were too small or too poor.
Ewes and lambs waiting to be drafted
The start of the draft, 2,000 ewes and lambs waiting to come up through the pens and through the drafting race
After dinner we put all the abattoir animals through the shearing shed where we took out there ear tags and branded them all with our ink station brand of GI.  A long day, didn't get into the house until 6:30pm.  Pleased with the results though.

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