Thursday, May 23, 2013

SHEARING DAY!!!

 
Shearing Day at Arrow Acres Farm was a huge success!  It is a day that is much anticipated and brings with it a bundle of nerves, anxiety, excitement and exhaustion.  You never know what you might uncover under all that fleece.  But I have to say the herd looked great.
 
This is where we set up to shear. It is shed #1.  The girls were checking it out while we got set up.


 
I got up at 5:30 this morning so excited for today.  I tried to go back to bed, but I couldn't.  The boys woke up about ten minute after me so we stayed up. No snoozing today.  I got out of the house early and over to the farm to help clean and set up.  Thank you to my wonderful husband to taking care of the boys today so I could go do alpaca stuff.


 
Lily's fleece made the shear say WOW!  It is beautiful. I didn't have my camera handy at all times so I missed getting her sheared, but I'll be sure to snap a shot of it on the skirting table. It is fantastic.


Vauneese was so ready to have her hair cut.


Five day old Mr. Bates got his hair cut like a champ. He was so cooperative. I think my kids could take some lessons from him.




Some people who don't know the whole shearing process sometimes ask me: do they get hurt, why do you have to tie them down, they must suffer. No, No and No. If we don't shear them, they will get heat stroke and die. So it is in their best interest to shear.  We tie them down to make the process much faster. It only takes about 10 minutes per alpaca and they are so happy once their fleeces are off they will even come back into the room freely to check on who is getting sheared next.  Clearly they didn't suffer and are happy to watch.


Spicy's fleece!

 
Reno's neck. 



 
Reno is a show animal so he gets a fancy modified bobble.


 
Next up Blue!!! Oh I was so excited I can't even tell you. Here is a shot of his fleece from his side.
 

I have been dreaming about what I am going to use his fleece for.


The shearer was impressed with his fleece and recommended I show it. 
 I thought that was pretty awesome. Since our shearer knows what he is talking about I am going to put it in a fiber competition before I spin it. So rock on Blue!

 
Blue has gotten some blue ribbons before for his fleece.  He could be used for breeding. My parents have a high end breeding program and I am not sure if he is high end enough for the girls on the farm.  So either I have to buy a girl (Lily!) or he is just a fiber boy.  Maybe someday I'll have a little Blue running around. It is kind of hard to afford to get started in the alpaca business. But I'm going to figure something out for myself some day.



Look at Blue with his fancy new hair cut.



Look at how happy Kigo looks having his fleece off.


I can't tell you how excited I was to hear from the shearers that Blue's fleece looked great and that he didn't have any issues going on like skin stuff or lumps or bumps. Phew! It is like a good well visit at the docs office.  He deserves a lollipop.
 

 
Check out Bing before and after.

 
I was hoping to get more before and after shots, but that didn't work out. My parents had to go to help another alpaca farm shear their animals. I am so worn out I can't imagine how exhausted they are going to be. It is 8:35 pm and they are still shearing and we started at 8:30 this morning.  I can hardly walk.  I can't imagine how exhausted they are!
 
A huge thanks to Mariacher Shearing Services Jay Mariacher for the great shearing job today!
See you next year and best of luck for the rest of your shearing tour.
 
 

4 comments:

beth jillette said...

Fascinating. Great pictures.

This is probably ignorant but......Does the fleece come off in one big piece or does it just look like it?

Brian King said...

LOL! They look so funny afterwards! Almost humiliated, but I'm sure it has to feel good. And cooler. Glad Blue gave up some impressive fleece!

eidolons said...

What fun! I love living vicariously through your blog. (:

And all that scrumptious fleece! *swoons*

Debbie said...

WoW, that's a lot of fleece!! They must have lost at least10 lbs each!!

They are cuter with their fleece ;))))