Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Peony's ewe - Rich

This beautiful little ewe lamb is out of Windswept Peony and Sheltering Pines Cihat. She's black with what looks like a more primitive fleece. She's only a few days old right now, so I'll reserve judgment on what she and her fleece will look like. I would expect her fleece to be relatively long, however, which is the way we like them.
Her mother, a fawn smirslet sokket, is one of our top three or four ewes right now, so we are excited about this lamb! Both parents have excellent conformations, which is an area that we are focusing heavily on.
It's possible that this lamb will end up shaela, but we'll have to wait and see. It can take quite a while for the modified colors to present themselves. I'm expecting her to be black, however. Her fleece does seem to have a lot of luster right now, I'll say that much.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Kiraz sees spots - Rich

Kiraz delivered twin HST lambs on Thursday am, a ewe and a ram. Her ram looks like he's going to be striking! His father is Windswept White Pine. I really like what I see in this guy. His mother has a medium length very soft fleece. We've never been 100% clear on her color. She's either modified (fawn) or iset moorit. She may actually be both. The ram seems to be very square. He will be a nice flock sire and should throw lots of flash.

Kiraz's HST yuglet ewe is also very nice. She has outstanding markings and small eye patches! This ewe lamb also looks to be very square. She will likely be fine boned like her mother. Both of these lambs have some extremely nice genetics behind them in terms of conformation and markings!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Violet has her first lamb - Rich

Pike Hill Violet came through early Tuesday morning with her first lamb, a katmoget ram. Violet was bred to Windswept White Pine last fall and this ram should be quite nice.

In addition to carrying nice spotting, he may also be a homozygous katmoget. His father is a HST yuglet katmoget.

This ram also has an unusual bersugget like appearance if you look at his back. Some of you big time katmoget breeders have probably seen this before, but it gives a two-toned appearance to his upper body. I think he is going to be very nice!

Friday, April 18, 2008

Buttercup's first lamb is HST - Rich

Whispering Pines Buttercup had her first lamb on Thursday morning. This was the first year we bred Buttercup because we thought she was a touch small as a lamb. She’s still a touch small for a two year old, but she did a great job without my interference with this lamb! This little ewe lamb is very interesting! She is an HST moorit smirslet, but she has a yuglet patch on one side! I think that’s really cool! Jen says she's a "Smuglet". Buttercup and the ram she was bred to (Windswept White Pine) both have outstanding conformations, so I would expect this lamb to as well. She’s only about an hour old in this picture.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Fantasia delivers - Rich

I think it’s rare when you have a vision in your breeding program and see it fulfilled so completely. We brought in V Creek Fantasia last summer because we wanted to get into HST yuglet katmogets. She is an extremely nice ewe, but her fleece length is shorter than we like. We bred her to Cihat last year in hopes of getting an HST yuglet katmoget ram with the best of his parents attributes. Although it’s too early to tell whether this ram will have the best of both worlds, I can honestly say that if we breed Shetlands for the next 20 years, I doubt we will get a closer representation of what I like than this little guy! He is an HST yuglet flecket katmoget! I don’t think I’ve ever been more excited about a lamb in the seven years we have been breeding Shetlands! He has so much white on him, it wasn’t immediately obvious he was a katmoget. Once the ewe (okay, I) cleaned him off well enough to see his legs, I could see the pattern, and then upon closer inspection, you could see it on his eye patches as well! He’s also one of the largest lambs we’ve had this year. His mother did great, however, without assistance!

The ram is barely two days old in these pictures, but he’s doing great! He was starting to run around outside this morning, so it shouldn’t be long before he joins in on the lamb races!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Adult Ewes for Sale

We are offering four adult ewes for sale:

Sheltering Pines Black Eyed Susan
Black Eyed Susan has striking HST markings! Her ram lamb from last year took third in his ram class at NAILE last year, which is quite an accomplishment! Her ewe lambs this year are also very nice with striking markings! This is a great opportunity to bring in striking yuglet HST markings to your flock! She throws lots of flash.

Underhill Chiffon
Chiffon is a nice little yearling ewe. She is registered as a shaela gulmoget, so she’s modified to boot! Chiffon had a beautiful gulmoget ram this year and is proving to be an outstanding mother. What a pretty fleece she has! Chiffon would bring solid genetics and modified breeding to your flock. Nice conformation! She stands out nicely in our flock with her fleece type and color!

Twin Springs Rose
This is a rare opportunity to own an extremely rare spotted gulmoget! I really don’t want to sell her, but must to make room for some of the new lambs that we like a lot! Rose is registered as Shaela, and has a nice soft fleece. She also has a nice long body and excellent leg length. I’d love to keep her if I could! Rose is a solid all around yearling ewe

Whispering Pines Lilly
Lilly is a white ewe with an unusual large brown spot on her neck. In addition to having a nice white fleece, Lilly is a fantastic nurturing mother to her lambs. Lilly has a very good conformation and just turned three this spring.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Just keep 'em coming - Jen

Rich is upstairs taking a nap. He took the week off from work for our peak lambing time. We may have a few stragglers next week, but our expectation (yes. I know. God is laughing as I write) is that we will have the bulk finished by next Sunday.
For the last two nights, we've had lambs delivered into the wee hours, so he is sleeping now while I watch the lamb cam, then it'll be my turn to catch some z's.

Myrtle (Lofty Pine Molly) and Cihat's lambs arrived last night, a jet black pair - ram and ewe. We will keep a close eye on them to see if either looks to be shifting to grey like mom, but Rich said today he thinks they will stay black. We chose this pairing because Myrtle is a very square, correct ewe and Cihat has just a magnificent conformation. That was pretty much the whole deal there. We thought there might be an outside chance of spots, but weren't counting on it. Both lambs carry nice spotting, however, so we knew we would get that!
I think at this point we've hit every main color - we've gotten white, black, grey, and moorit. Plus a nice array of solids and patterns. So far its 3 rams to 9 ewes, so we are expecting a calvacade of rams as we make our way to the home stretch.

I tried to grab a few photos of Tiara's ewe this sunny afternoon. The profile shot I think shows how nice her lines are, just like her parents - Under the Son Tiara and Clover.

We have posted 4 adult ewes for sale on our web site, all excellent breeding stock. Wish we could keep them, but we have a cap on the number of breeding ewes we will maintain in our flock. We think around 18 ewes is the limit, at this point anyways, with Rich's travel and the boys activity schedules. This way they will get the level of care and attention that they so richly deserve. I will try to post their photos tomorrow on the blog, our dial up connection is testing my patience at the moment. I hope it cooperates better for me tomorrow - some days it works, and other days it takes all I have to keep myself from throwing the computer out the window...

Monday, April 14, 2008

Even more lambs! - Rich

It was a busy weekend at Whispering Pines. It started Saturday and spilled over into early Sunday morning when Bluff Country Zabrina gave birth to these two little gems.

These are two shots of a very dark brown ram - looks like he’s going to be very nice! He has a nice blaze and krunet as well as a nice white tail! He looks very correct (for a lamb that’s only a day old). He will be for sale (although we haven’t determined a price yet). He also carries his father’s HST yuglet markings! He will throw some nice flash!

His sister has lots of flash! Featured to the left and in the two photos below, she is a black yuglet katmoget with two white socks and tail! I’m calling her yuglet right now, but the katmoget markings make it difficult to determine. She also has an extremely square body for a very young lamb! Her mother is also very square as is the father, Windswept White Pine. These are White Pine’s first lambs for us and we look forward to the others!

We weren’t sure what Zabrina would throw, but we knew she carried those flashy Bluff Country spots so we took a chance with her. Zabrina is a very correct ewe and Jen really likes how soft her fleece is. Even I could feel how soft it was! I can’t wait to see how these lambs develop.

I remember as a young lad yearning one day to be a professional photographer. Alas, it wasn’t meant to be, and when one takes a gander at these lamb pictures, you can see why. I must have spent an hour snapping about 100 pictures this morning and these are the only somewhat functional results. I’ve seen better pictures of bigfoot than what I was able to produce in a morning's work! Naturally, the best photos were of lambs I've already blogged. This is Chiffon's gulmoget ram, posing nicely for me.

Be that as it may, here are two marginal photos of Minwawe Seraphim’s ewe lamb. Wow! Right now she looks a lot like a ram that we sold last year that turned out to be incredibly nice! I would almost call her a caped flecket (if one were into wearing very short capes). She’s not even a day old in these pictures so bear that in mind, but there really isn’t anything not to like at this point! This is exactly what I was hoping to get out of one of our ewes this year! I love wild spotting and she has plenty of white to contrast the black! She’ll be registered as a yuglet flecket. Very nice! Her mom is a musket yuglet flecket sokket, so I’m not sure yet whether this lamb will be Ag or not. She does have a lot of black on her ears, so maybe if I look closely, I might be able to see something, but I doubt it. She also has a lot of white there as well. Her father is Sheltering Pines Cihat.

Tiara also decided to get in on the action late last evening. Tiara was bred to Under The Son Clover, our mioget gulmoget ram. I was hoping for a spot carrying modified gulmoget from that pairing, but will have to settle for this lustrous little mioget ewe lamb. We’ll post better pictures of her on Tuesday. She was sleeping and I didn’t want to disturb her (plus she’s only 12 hours old). I haven’t really had a good look at her yet, but she should be extremely nice! Tiara is one our top five ewes (by my subjective scoring system) and Clover is just as nice (if not nicer).

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

More Lambs - Rich

Okay, if we stopped lambing today, I think I would be quite satisfied with this year’s crop! The two little girls above were born on Tuesday. One is a smirslet socket, and the other is an HST yuglet. I think both have very neat markings. They are out of Sheltering Pines Black Eyed Susan and Sheltering Pines Cihat. This same cross produced Whispering Pines Jeb Stuart last year, who turned out to be an extremely nice ram! We thought we’d take another dip in the genetics pool and reproduce what we got last year (only with ewes this time). Nice lambs!

Last year we brought in two ewes from Theresa Gygi from Under the Son Farm in Indiana and we really like both a great deal. Tiara is a mioget krunet and Betulina is a moorit gulmoget, who quickly became one of our favorites with her deer like features and friendly personality. On Tuesday, Betulina gave birth to a beautiful gulmoget ewe (left), which is exactly what I was hoping for. We bred Cihat to her last fall in hopes of getting a spot carrying gulmoget with an outstanding conformation and long fleece. I really like this one!

As anticipated, we’re already struggling to decide which lambs to keep. Although it’s way too early to decide that, we’ve only had five ewe lambs so far, and I like all of them! Given that we’re only a third of the way through lambing, this is going to be a problem. I suppose it’s a good problem to have!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Lambs...At Last! - Rich

On Sunday morning, Sheltering Pines Cihat and Whispering Pines Queen Anne’s Lace became the proud parents to twin white ewe lambs. Both lambs have adorable pink noses and boundless energy! Now what to name them?

We weren’t sure what to expect from Queen Anne. We know for sure that she carries spots and has a brown base color, but we’re not sure if she is genetically spotted. Unfortunately, these two little beauties aren’t going to help us determine whether Queen Anne is fully spotted.

These lambs are Cihat’s first in 2008. Last year we had four lambs out Cihat, and all four were really nice. His ram from last year placed third in his class at NAILE! I think these two ewe lambs have the potential to be something special as well. One or both will end up in a new home.

Under the Son Clover and Underhill Chiffon also became proud parents to our first black gulmoget ram. I really like how he looks at one day old! Clover is a very nice mioget gulmoget ram and Chiffon is a Shaela gulmoget ewe. We were hoping for an emsket gulmoget and that’s entirely possible! I’m almost certain he’ll be shaela! He has very striking markings similar to his mom’s. We’ll have to wait and see how his color develops. He’ll at least carry the modifier if he isn’t emsket! Mother and Son are enjoying the peace and tranquility of their studio jug until the other lambs start coming…probably today and tomorrow. After that, they’ll have to learn to live with the rest of the ewes. My plan is to keep the pregnant ewes on one half of the barn and put the mothers and lambs in the new addition. This should help reduce the stress of re-entry.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Things that happen while waiting for lambs - Jen

Here is Trixie taking advantage of my empty knitting basket. This basket has been the home of a lace shawl project that I have been toiling over, I'm ashamed to say, for 3+ years. The yarn came from WP Iris who we sold 5 years ago. I wanted to finish it before shearing, but that was not to be. I am close, but I think I am going to run out of yarn before its done. I will have to finish it with Sunny, I think she's the closest in color and texture. I can't wait to blog on that shawl. I hope I don't hate it. I know I'm going to need bifocals by the time its done though, its so hard.

No, we haven't started to breed goats. Here are the girls taking up much less space in the barn since shearing. Rich is behind the stairs out of reach of the camera, and he is scooping out grain. So I captured their frenzy w/the camera.

Sunday afternoon we drove over to cousin Gwen's to help her with shots and worming. We covet her cool barn and beautiful split rail fencing. In addition to the 4 shetlands she adopted from us, she has goats, Guinea hens, a potbelly pig and chickens. Quite the little operation she's got going.

Here is our oldest, Andrew, enjoying a happy reunion with Marigold, one of our starter ewes. Gwen adopted Marigold last year along with Marigolds' two lambs, Lizzie and Leslie. Marigold was with us for 5 years, and it was hard to let her go, but its a comfort to have her close and we visit her often. She was the most friendly and also the dominant ewe in our flock before she left.

Andrew again with Marigold's black ewe lamb. We bred Marigold with Cihat last year and she produced these two stellar lambs. They both have fantastic back lines, straight legs, nice long bodies and really pretty facial bone structure.

You may recall Rich blogging about lambs that he's sold and then experiencing seller's remorse. Well, these are two of them, he would love to have back into his breeding flock. But, you can't keep them all. Marigold is in the center, and I still can't remember which is Lizzie and which is Leslie.