Friday, May 22, 2015

Learning More About Rotational Grazing

The rams have done a pretty good job eating down their pasture, so it was time to move them again.
On the left in the photo above is the area they have been grazing for the past 5 days. Even though Alan was able to take a vacation day Wednesday I wanted to move the sheep without him. I need to be able to do this myself and always having him help me is not making me learn.
Anyway, Mackenzie, our youngest child is home from college for the summer and was a willing helper. Good thing too, since we had to move a calf hutch about 250 feet down the meadow. I wanted to start grazing the area at the other end of this pasture where it tends to get very wet. We have been seriously lacking in rainfall recently and this area is perfect for grazing right now. If we suddenly start getting a lot of rain this area will become off limits. Alan actually reclaimed this area last fall. It had been totally overgrown.
I actually set up two grazing areas. I want to try to always have the area they will be moving into next ready to go.
So what did the silly rams do first? They check out the calf hutch and ate some hay. I am still giving them a flake of hay daily until their rumens have totally adjusted to the grass diet.
After they ate some hay and the grass in their calf hutch they got to work on the good stuff!

I am learning how to make the electric rope fence work for me and the sheep have really learned to respect it. They won't get closer than a foot or two. I suspect I will be fairly proficient in fencing once I move the rams another three or four more times.

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