Wednesday, May 12, 2010

The psyche of sheep

Learning to understand the spirit and soul of a sheep is something that I strive to do. It really helps when handling sheep, to know just what their actions might be. As I grow older and my flock grows larger and my back grows weaker, I am constantly looking at ways to improve the routine handling of sheep. If you have sheep of your own, you know that they are quite intelligent, but a different intelligence from our own.
Which leads me to our "Bridge of Peril". If you haven't seen our YouTube video from last year, click here.
We have access to a wonderful, varied planted pasture north of our creek. We have a small wooden bridge for the sheep to cross, which they have become used to, and readily use. We've had some flooding in the last couple of days, which has washed the bridge downstream a bit. We repositioned it, just 10 feet away from the original spot. Well, this has totally upset the routine of our sheep. In the morning, when we move them from the barnyard to the N. creek pasture, they run toward the creek in glee, kicking up their heels. But then they arrive to where their bridge is supposed to be and look at the creek bank in dismay. Where is the bridge? How will they cross to the lush north pasture?
Hello!? It's just 10 feet west of the original spot!

So, I spend some time trying to coax and lure the sheep across this new bridge. Most aren't convinced, but the gullible little lambs trot across without a thought. Several of the ewes, and some of the lambs lept into the creek, and swam across to their verdant pasture. Crazy, when all they'd have to do is cross across the bridge just 10 feet away.
If you thought sheep couldn't swim, yes, they can! They are great swimmers!



Kelly or Alex said...

I know some people like that. Make one change and they can't deal with it. Sheep are such creatures of habit. The pasture is so green and lush.

Marie said...

Oh My Gosh!!! I just watched your video and that is GREAT!!!! Too funny about them not 'seeing' the bridge in the other spot!
Oh what great fun!

kenleighacres said...

Like you, I find the sheep mind fascinating. They are truly creatures of habit and routine. Too funny that a few decided to swim!

Chai Chai said...

I saw the video about 6 months ago, it is nice to find the original source. Your sheep are beautiful and the picture of the yarn is fantastic. Do you milk your sheep?

Terri said...

We do milk them some for personal use, or to have some on hand in the freezer in case we need it for lambs. I want to make soap with some of it, and I'd LOVE to make cheese!!!

katiegirl said...

Oh my gosh, that is too funny!! And that is why I love sheep. They're so entertaining! :-)