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Introducing the family Part I

Well Ive introduced myself, now time for a post to introduce the most important residents of Woolly Wally Farm (i call it that as Woolly Wally is a sheep character i created 25 years ago upon the birth of my first ever pet sheep, my dear departed Rachel)

Of course i mean the sheep! So first up id like to tell you all about my handsom and infamous rammy Hercules (thats him up front there)

Now Herc didnt have a good start in life- he was a late lamb born on the beach, not in the labing fields, and his mom possibly had a hard time rearing him. I dont know whether he was a single or a twin, or indeed who his mom was as i first became aware of his existence one day in February 2016 when i saw a tiny scrappy thing desperately devouring any blade of grass he could find. Over the weeks he was always along my path to work, i could see he wasnt with a mom anymore and didnt really follow the other sheep either, so i decided to give him a helping hand. The day i decided to catch him i thought he would be a runner. But in fact his muscles were so wasted he actually just fellover when he saw me approaching him!!

Thats him there, a few weeks after id brought him home-doing what he did best- devouring grass! My grazing is a bit uneven, and i had to keep checking on him through the day as he'd fall down in a dip and not be able to get up again. However after 4 months of good grazing (and some hard feed) Hercules was well on the way to recovery. As his body grew it became too big for the straight jacket of a fleece he'd been carrying and it quite literally peeled off him in a ready made vegetarian sheepskin rug- i use it as a bedroom rug!

Being a ram, and the rest of my flock being girls i knew he couldnt stay during the autumn and winter as i didnt want my flock increasing exponentially! So i released him back to the shore where i found him (only 100m from my farm) but promised him id keep looking after him, so id feed him every time i saw him- which during the winter wasnt much as he was either down at the shoreline eating seaweed, or chasing girls!

This has pretty much been the situation every year, id feed him when i saw him, if he got hurt id bring him home and treat him, and in the summer id bring him home and feed.

He's always had a beautiful nature- stoic, considered, like a wise old man and his placcidity and general acceptance of humans has resulted in him being a bit of a Poster Boy on the island- im certain most visitors to the island will have a portrait photo of him posing for the camera!

This year when i brought him home, he was thinner than past winters, and had lost 2 of his front teeth. He was getting old. So after consulting with the vet i made the decision to get him castrated and he can now live out his days at home, with ample food and a barn to shelter in, and plenty of his new favourite thing- stroking (he adores the attention- check out my videos on instagram to see what i mean!)

So we are gonna be a full house this winter- with the new lambs and their moms, my original flock and Hercules all now having a permanent home here, Thats plenty of fleeces for my future projects........

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