I have finished plucking three of the bunnies and thought I would share a before and after picture. This is one of the bucks.
It is amazing how many people think that you have to kill a rabbit or goat to get their fiber. Just to let you see - Copper is alive and well and thrilled to have a lighter coat.
Since our barn is now complete, Marc and I moved the Shetlands from the far out pasture to the arena. I sure wish we had had a photographer along. We started at 5 P.M.. This guy got moved first. (I keep changing his name, so I can't tell you what it is.) He is my new herd sire and pretty feisty. After Marc moved the 3rd sheep, I suggested that we use the wheelbarrow to move them. Flipped on their backs, they become quite docile. The ewes had decided to rebel by just sitting down and refusing to move. It was an ordeal to keep them on their feet and it was taking way too long. We could not drag them! By 7 P.M., it was very dark and it was hard to keep track of how many sheep were in the shed to be moved. I counted four left and was beginning to feel like we were almost done, when Marc came out saying that there were still four in there - even after he had caught the one he was holding. It got even funnier when we came back and caught the next ewe, because Marc reported that there were still four ewes in the shed. I told him that we were just taking too long and that they were just multiplying before our eyes. There were really four more to go!
By the time the sheep were all moved, I was beat and I still had to feed. The last to get fed were the sheep that I had just moved. The ram was mad and he charged me - knocking over the feed wagon. He gave new meaning to the word "rammed"! I ran out the arena while he was distracted by the feed on the ground. Then I had Marc run interference while I finished feeding. This ram was even in the mood to charge Marc.
It is several days later and I am still having to watch my back when I go out to feed. I had been carrying a large stick and abandoned it yesterday. Well, I will be carrying it again in the morning. Even though I had already put food in the sheep's direction, he came after me again this evening. I let the wagon take the brunt of his hit. Too bad I bought him this year and will need to use him for at least two years to recoup my investment. He is going in a pen back in the goat area on Saturday afternoon. He will be lonely without his harem, but I can't leave him out like I have done with Espresso, since I need to be able to go in and help the ewes during lamb delivery. Can't do that with him coming after me. Those horns are scary!
I have designated this Saturday as the day to remove the bucks and rams from the does and ewes. It is going to be too hot for them to deliver in June. Several of them are probably not pregnant since it has been so hot here. If artificial insemination were not so expensive and unpredictable, I would seriously consider it. The does have gotten picky about who they will breed with and some of the males are just too destructive.