Fiber

Today we had three more sets of visitors to the ranch to pet and love on our toddler-lambs. What a treat for us on New Years Day!

My friend Diane was asking me about their fiber and I told her that theres not much wool on our breed of “hair sheep,” and what is there is is so full of debris, it would take me forever to clean enough to make a felted wool toy or ornament.

Tonight I was noticing the return of the barn swallows and researching ways to attract and retain them (I’m in love with swallows of every kind). While reading back issues of the articles on the Backyard Bird Shop website, I stumbled upon a wonderful use for the wool fiber that we trim off our ewes… bird nest material!

Birds don’t care about the little bits of hay, dirt and seed in the fiber! In fact they might even tease the hay seed out as a snack for those long days of laying.

Then I thought: Oh! My Chickens need nesting material too! Right now I use shreds from my paper shredder, but they aren’t always very soft or cushiony, and they make the henyard into a littered mess when one gets dragged out. Next time we shear, I’m collecting the remnants for my hens! I can’t believe I didn’t think of this sooner.

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