Friday, August 31, 2012
Livestock judging. It was misting out when some other 4-H kids came to judge at our house. Nobody complained because we haven't had rain in a while. Livestock judging is when we look at a four animals - either pigs, sheep, goats or beef cows - and put them in order of how we like them. Neil is our coach and some of the parents help too. After we place them, or put then the order of how we like them, we then have to tell them why we placed them that way. The why part can be hard.
We learn that it is important to make sure they walk right, and that the biggest animal isn't always the best one. Each year we practise and get better at the why part. We have to take notes to study for the questions they ask. This practise was at our farm and we judged pigs, sheep and beef right before we went to the state contest. Isaac wasn't old enough to go to the state contest. This was my first year.
Judging can be hard but we have fun together learning. (And maybe some goofing too)
Monday, August 27, 2012
See this cool bale mover our neighbor has? Dad bought some hay and Bradley brought his tractor that can unload and move two big round bales at one time. It took no time at all for him to unload. I think Dad was really happy that he brought this tractor. It saved a lot of time. Glad we have some hay for this winter.
Thursday, August 23, 2012
Wednesday, August 22, 2012
Here we are in Lamb Lead. This is a contest where we lead a sheep, wear something that is at least 70% wool and get interviewed by a judge about wool, sheep and the sheep industry. We have learned a lot about wool by being in this contest. Did you know that wool not only keeps you warm but is stretchy, last a long time (Mom says durable) and is a renewable resource? Our Suffolk sheep have medium to course wool which is good for sweaters and rugs. But my sweater (thats me in the blue sweatshirt) is from Merino wool. Merino is a different breed of sheep that has really really soft fine wool. My sweatshirt wasn't itchy at all, and it had a skateboarder on it.
Why do we do lamb lead? To show the public that wool is something that anyone can wear, it is beautiful, comforable and versitile.
Friday, August 17, 2012
The pig show is fun. Here is my brother Andrew showing off his Duroc pig for the judge. Even though the county fair is done my brother is still working with his pigs for the state fair. He will show them in FFA. We did alright with our pigs this year mostly purples and blues. Isaac did get one red because the pig didn't walk right and we knew that but didn't want to leave it home alone. Just like all animals it is important that the pig walks well.
Putting my pig in a pen. Thank goodnes the ring helper was there because it can be hard to do when the pig wants to "visit" with all the other pigs.
Thursday, August 16, 2012
What fun it is to feed the sheep because it seems they really appreciate it. Well I didn't have my camera there but feeding apples to sheep is really a lot of fun. Why apples? Well Grandpa and Grandma have several apple trees that were dropping their fruit on the ground because of the wind. So we fill buckets with the apples on the ground and feed them to the sheep. It is fun to hear them crunch on the apples and then look for the other half as part of the apple drops out as they take a bite. In one pen I just tossed them in the pen one at a time as I didn't want to trudge out to the feed bunk. How fun watching them trying to follow the apples bouncing in the pen. Maybe I will get a picture of it someday. Silly sheep.
Tuesday, August 14, 2012
We got to show our ducks at the fair. We showed a breeding pen- which is one drake (male) and two hens (females). Isaac and I each had a pen of breeding ducks. Isaac's placed higher than mine but I got a purple too. Here we are showing our market pens - which is two of the same sex - male or female. Ours were both a pair of males. They were not quite ready for market and the other duck pens were ready but we did get blues.
We had fun with our ducks.
P.S. Anybody want to buy a duck?
Friday, August 10, 2012
Here we all are showing sheep together at the fair. Don't the sheep look nice? Those baths really worked. These are Suffolk sheep, they have black heads and legs. The bottom picture is of two of our rams. When the sheep are bigger we help the person holding the head set the legs in the right position - so they look their best.
Monday, August 6, 2012
Yup, we are washing sheep. We had some really hot days and it was kind of fun. It takes time to get all the soap out after scrubbing them. Grandpa makes a pen for them in the middle of the grassy yard. They look so fluffy white after they dry. Sometimes they shake themselves like a dog to get the water out.
After they dry we clip the wool so they look really nice.