Different sheep breeds and angora goats graze our meadows and pastures. The grazing habits and requirements of these vary and to some extent compliment one another. The fleeces for these can be used for various crafts. For details about the individual breeds see below.
Sheep include a registered flock of Boreray, registered Oessant, unregistered Kerry Hill and unregistered Hebridean.
Boreray are on the ‘ At Risk’ category of the Rare Breed Survival Trust. They are very hardy and generally healthy with excellent feet. The main disadvantage with them is that they are very nervous and flighty, often difficult to get into a pen or load into a trailer. The younger ones quite easily jump over a standard height sheep hurdle, so they have on many occasions escaped before they should have. They are very wary and not easy to move from one paddock to another. The ones here do flock together to a degree and I often find that my dog, Moss, can be a great help in getting them where I want them. Having a public footpath running through the property and not having the perimeter entirely secured does mean extra care and effort needs to be taken when moving these sheep.
We just have 4 hebrideans, 2 ewes and 2 whethers. They are very strong and agile, similar in temperament to the Boreray, but the whethers particularly are taller and heavier. The fleeces have been washed and carded and can then be used for warm rugs or throws.
Four angora goats provide excellent mohair which can blended with fleeces from the sheep, producing quality roving and yarns.