Hi guys ‘n gals! Great to see the website. Can we send you photos please – a picture paints a thousand words! All the best
Esteban – looking forward to seeing you at Moira. We have excellent entries – at least 40 eligible for export on the night. Some cracking ram lambs just looking for work! And lots of very pretty young ladies too. Did you see the advertisement in the Farmers Journal? I think I can email the catalogue to you when it’s ready if you would like to get one email me on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thanks for putting the sale’s report up on the site so quickly.
Interesting to read about the difference in flavour between the pure breed and the half Zwarbles half Suffolk. Great detail there on how to cook the lamb. Lovely pics too 🙂
where are you in ireland and how much would you pay for each fleece
I am based in Kilkenny and will be buying the pure breed ZSA registered Zwartbles wool from Registered breeders for 25c a kelo. I can not take half breed wool as I’m am trying to keep this as pure breed Zwartbles as possible. The wool will have to be black and as clean as is possible, no rear end tags or belly wool. Hopefully if this works out the price might improve after the first year. To keep it interesting for non sheep people who love wool I would also like to have the flock names or even sheep registered names whose wool would have been used to make the rugs or wool that is spun for knitting. This goes back to traceability which is what people are interested in. Thank you for your interest.
I have 6whole fleeces from last year @ willhave 8 this year if you could let me know if you are interested many thanks Paul
Yes I am very interested where are you based?
Quite an adventure. Relieved all is well.
My sister roasted a leg of one of your zwartbles for a new year dinner last night using the same ingredients & I can honestly say I have never had a lamb taste as succulent & so full of flavour as this one…most delicious indeed…so much so I’m sure it would convert steadfast vegetarians!
So glad you enjoyed the lamb. I understand you have now booked one from this years yet unborn crop.
Definitely a moral in that story!
Pleased that all ended well. What a day and there was I (a city gal) thinking that I would love to be a farmer. On reflection I think not!
They are handsome beasts. Look forward to hearing more about them.
Are they naturally short-tailed then? Lovely looking lambs – they look like they have some good loin length in the carcass. Any idea on the fleece? I’d love a sample come shearing time!
Hi, Found you on the Etsy Blog Team. I, too, am a knitter and I also have Scottish roots (and Irish and German . . . ). My dethguar and I were in the Aran Islands a couple of years ago. I had planned to purchase a “real” Irish sweater there. Sweater shops abound on the main island. But there were so many shops and so many sweaters (and such high prices with the exchange rate at that time) that I was overwhelmed and left Ireland without a sweater at all! Lucky and smart you to have brought some back! My dethguar stayed on in Ireland for several months and she bought wool that she knitted some lovely scarves with.Glad to have found your blog!Lynette – SweetPosyDreams
Aaaaah you’re so nonchalant about this! This post ohrbeted me so much it really brought to the forefront how much I like to play ignorant about where my food came from when I am eating meat. Which is a bit of an eye-opener for me because I thought I was okay with it, but maybe I’m not really. It’s tasty, but I could never eat an animal that I had met while it was alive, much less one that I had named do you have a hard time with that at all?On the other hand though, I think it’s wonderful to know exactly where your food is coming from, that the animals were treated well while they were alive, and that they’re not packed full of hormones, so that is definitely an upside. Reply:November 13th, 2010 at 4:56 pmIt’s different when you know the animal is destined to be food. There’s no way I could kill eat *my* dog, even though I’ve eaten dog before. And I’m sure I’d feel awful about eating someone’s pot-bellied pet, even though I love bacon. Knowing what I do about industrial food production, I actually feel a LOT better about eating a sheep I knew, whose health I could see in her shiny eyes and thick fleece, and who I know lived out her short but sheepy destiny rather than one who lived in anonymous terror and misery in a factory farm somewhere.
Finnsheep will have litters bteween 3-5 pretty normally. The larger the litter your ewe comes form the higher the likelihood that they will also have large litters
I’m so glad to see that she’s doing well now! She looks great in that last picture! 🙂
This is a wonderful story; So touching, sweet and funny. Brava to you and to little Aggee and all the folks who whose tweeting helped so much! What a beautiful tale of life and connection.
i see your post made it to my (re)publication. thrilled to know you had a survivor. as i read this my mind went back to the 80’s when we had a dairy in Virginia. such a helpless feeling when they’re breach. i’ve written about one such experience, but don’t have it online right now because i’m in the process of moving blogs. love how you were able to capture the progression in images.
Gee, I felt I was going thro each stage with you trying to help Aga Lamb..What a Happy ending..we must chat re wool..you have my email here…keep in touch..Brenda/Waterford..
Hi Suzanne, Fabulous pic, she must be so tame to let you do that. I’ve just awarded you a Liebster award, do check out this post to see all the details and I hope you pass on the blogging love 🙂
Sorry, forgot to post the link – here it is http://irishfarmerette.com/2012/03/17/paying-it-forward-liebster-blog-award/
Thank you so much that is wonderful.
hehe I love it, a very happy paddys to you too
I absolutely love this. Really looking forward to future posts. Let’s see some more horses!
Great, just like The Archers used to be – an everyday story of country folk! Keep up the good work
Thank you glad you enjoyed it.
I love following your farm on facebook, and will someday travel to Ireland. When I do, I would love to visit your farm (if that is something you allow) and see your wonderful sheep and beautiful German Shepherd.
This latest photo series really shows how incredibly arduous, every day farm life can be. Its like “Black Beauty” syndrome in reverse. I get it here all the time. Everything looks so fabulous to visitors. You can’t say “If they only knew” now because you’ve “captured” or revealed the reality of it so perfectly. Well done, again.
Ah bless, you’ve got your work cut out there! And your grass certainly is very green. Should have taken you up on offer of dandelions too as havent managed to collect four cups, yet thought I had loads!
Magic. I love the wool hanging on the blossoming trees. What a wonderful image to take away.
Lovely. Magic. What an amazing image of the wool in the blossoming trees.
Thank you Sally glad you enjoyed the images. This is only the beginning next is collecting all the wool from around Ireland.
Fantastic photos! My new favorite wool… Zwartbles. It really is gorgeous!!!! Thanks so much for sharing these lovely photos.
Oh Suzanna, what a wonderful tour of Cushendale’s…Thank you so much. When Nicola, Kirsten and I went, neither Philip nor the darling ‘assistant’ were there. So nice to have the complete picture…Thanks so much for sharing. Will there also be cleaned, but uncarded Zwartbles wool that will be available to be shipped to the U.S.? I love it in its more natural state, too, for felting;-))) It is a fantastic wool…Thanks so much for introducing me to this most amazing and beautiful wool…I love it!!!!
Due to the Schmallenberg Virus which has hit sheep flocks across Europe Defra has banned the export of raw sheep materials to the USA. This virus has yet to make it to Ireland and we are holding our collective breath hoping it will not make an appearance. This does not prevent the shipment of cleaned fleeces which is what we will be doing with our wool at Cushedale. So you could say it will be the next best thing to raw, no chemicals will have been used in the cleaning just good clean water. It will also have gone through a bit of the carding process which makes it into easily feltable strips. When the ban has been lifted and they have figure out how the Schmallenberg Virus is transferred we will once again be able to ship a more raw fleece.
Delighted to hear your wool will be going there! I bought some recently from them for a jumper (am stuck, need a more patient head on before I pick it up again!). Your pictures just gave me a lovely tour of the backrooms that you dont get to see from the shop.
Thanks for those wonderfull pictures. It was so lovely to visit. I love the machinery, and that they are still working after 100 years.
We felt so velcome, and their products are amazing.
Cushendale’s just one of my favourite places to visit, can’t wait until your gorgeous fleece finally gets prepared and carded!!!
An everyday story of country folk – a bit like The Archers used to be…
Hello, wondering if you can help me. Which way should a zwartbles fleece be rolled? Inside out or Outside out? Thanks.
When you spread the fleece out onto the clean floor you want the skin side or black inside on the floor & the out side the sun bleached side up.
Then you fold in the 2 sides so they meet in the middle leaving the tail & neck out long.
Next you start rolling from the tail end tightly all the way up to the base of the neck part of the fleece.
At this point you put your foot at the base of the neck part of the fleece & start to twist as tight as you can & as you twist it pulling it out long as you go.
Once you have a nice long rope of wool you use that to wind around the sausage roll of wool & tying it off on its self.
I will be posting a series of photographs I took showing the whole process.
I hope that has answered your question.
I have just posted a shearing and fleece rolling photo post.
I am so glad I have found your blog I am loving it so far – we are relocating to Ireland in Feb and would love to come see your sheep – they are beautiful:)
Thank you I’m sure you can visit my sheep or there might be a breeder near where ever you move to in Ireland. Safe traveling and hope the move goes well for you. Good Luck.
An excellent blog – we’ll nominate some of these ladies for Oscars. Well done a great day’s work
Thank you very much it was a busy but wonderful day.
Lovely blog post. And so nice to see all you lovely animals again. Hugs.
Thank you very glad you enjoyed the blog post.
Now we can do it ourselves next year……. but I think I will leave to the experts – could take me hours to catch hold and clip just one!! Great blog
where can i get the results of the clonmel show zwartbles section
Call Mrs Breda Horgan 087 258 9528 she is the secretary of The Southern Ireland Zwartbles Sheep Society.
Please can you tell me how to obtain entry forms for the Hilltown sale on 5 October.
I have just posted all the information you wanted on the website.
Great to see Jimmy and his sheep featuring in the Journal today.
Love this post Suzanna! Would love to have had a longer tour around the woollen mills. It’s actually spurred me on to finish the jumper I started last year (but am a bit stuck on) so that I can make one from your wool 🙂
So glad you enjoyed this part of the tour. I will be writing up the next stages as we get to them. I hope you finish your jumper in time to start a new one with some pure wonderful rich dark Zwartbles yarn.
Thanks for sharing this. The size of the machines is
amazing. The small mills that many of us use in the US
do not have these gargantuan machines. I guess this mill
is processing lots of fleeces. Can’t wait to see more.
I was wondering if there are any Zwartbles in New England, USA?
I live in NH and have been thinking about raising sheep.
I do not think there are any Zwartbles sheep in the USA yet. There might be some half breeds as someone shipped sperm over there a few years ago. I was working with some people in New York state to ship over frozen embryos but this got stopped due to a new virus called Schmallenberg virus we have here in Europe. I don’t know when the ban will be lifted. So we might have to wait till they have developed an approved and viable vaccine.
Wouldlike to know whenor if you know of anyone in the us that has Awartbles?
I know someone years ago imported semen to USA but used it on sheep that were of a different breed. So I don’t think there are any purebred Zwartbles sheep in the USA
Great post S.
Looking forward to seeing the results of this collaboration and sharing it. I think it is a great story of mixing your love of the land, Zwartble sheep, craft and micro- enterprise in contemporary Ireland!
we are living in Danmark and have a flock off Zwartblessheep.
we are looking for new genetics. Can you tell me what the possibilyties are for embryo’s or semen?
Have you tried the ZSA at http://www.zwartbles.org/ ? They would have a complete register of all flocks who might sell sperm or do frozen embryos. Sorry I do not have that kind of information.I will pass on your details to others who might know what your looking for.
Do you know of anyone who is exporting semento the USA?
DEFRA has banned the export of any Ruminant semen, frozen embryo’s, or living livestock due to the schmallenberg virus (sbv) infection that has hit Europe since 2011.
For the US iquiries for semen, it is available for dale through Super Sires in the US
[…] Lunch over we went back outside and Suzanne talked again about photography and we took more images practising what we had just been learnt. We also got the opportunity to get up close with some friendly Zwartables sheep which Suzanne breeds on her farm. For information about this noble breed click here. […]
Exciting as its getting closer! The blanket looks gorgeous.
Having a break is always nice, even better to see you back writing though!
Glad to see that you are posting again! Really enjoy reading and can’t wait for the roving and yarn.
Great post. Love happy endings :-).
These are very interesting pictures, I have crossed the Jacob with Scottish Blackface ewes (Jacob ram) and also crossed the pure Jacob ewe with a Cheviot ram to staggering effect. The Jacob x Blackface are four horned and two horned huge lambs that have grown very fast and seem very hardy. The Cheviot ram on the Jacob ewe has produced a fantastic polled lamb. The lambs are jet black with white on the head and rump, very striking and the wool is soooo good. This is a great page with super pics, thank you 🙂 Regards, Neil.
hello, i’m just wondering if you still buy wool?
Yes I am still looking for Irish Zwartbles wool.
Naughty naughty ram lamb……boys will be boys!
Beautifully crafted post….great subject to work with! See you soon! xx
Thank you so much. Yes see you soon I hope.
What beautiful photographs!
Thank you Margaret
I’m loving your blog Suzanna and I’m sure scores of others are too – lovely writing and yes, even though I’m not a cat lover I’m looking forward to hearing more of the adventures of Mr B. Amanda would love this :0)
Thank you Lorna, I will try to keep up with writing Bodacious’s adventures.
You were just jealous of Mr. B sprawled out in front of the Aga…. you’d think he’d at least have had your brandy ready 🙂
I know!!! Some people only think of themselves!!! Cats!!!!
Great cat – but I’m fascinated by the mower – can you give me any details please? Andy
The flail mower is made here in Northern Ireland by a company called Quad-X http://www.quad-x.com/ie/ATV_Quad-flail-mower. It runs on a Briggs and Stratton 18H engine. I got the one with 4 wheels for stability on my steep hills.The flails mulch the field toppings which gets reabsorbed by the field much quicker than what a blade mower would. Which in turn improves the soil health also improving the grass and clover cover. I hope I have answered your questions.
Ooch poor babies… do you think it hurts them or is it like cutting our nails?
Ouch is right, I’m afraid it does hurt them, but they get over it surprisingly quickly.
Not only is it good to see a vintage machine in use but square (rectangle) bales! I was beginning to think that the machine that churned those out instead of the big round ones was extinct! I’ve been so pleased for the farmers this summer, doesn’t bare to think how yet another wet one would have turned out.
Where can we get catalogues from, Online or post ??
hi jason, Catalogues for the 1st of August can be ordered on-line from http://www.zwartbles.org The 2nd August I can send you a PDF email me email@example.com and the Z sale in Southern Ireland from the sec in Southern Ireland. Ring me if there is a prob – 07885065531
Could you clarify Is the Tullamore sale Friday the 30th or Saturday 31th of August?
Talk to you soon
I am going to correct the date on the website as you are correct and it is the Sat 31 of Aug that the Zwartbles sale in Tullamore is
Thanks for taking us with you on your wool gathering
journey. It was fun to see the sights.
Thank you so glad you enjoyed the journey.
Such bold boys – naughty step for them!!
Totally!!!!! Naughty step!!
I counted 18.
I am very interested in the zwartble breed and i am considering on purchasing a zwartble ram for use on half of my flock this year,
So I was just wondering, at the dungannon sale on augest 2nd, can a local farmer like myself purchase zwartble sheep, or are they only for export sale to the south?
also, can any flock holder purchase from these speaclist sales like a ordinary weekly sheep sale? or is there anything you need in order to purchase them?
Yes anyone can purchase from these sales and it would be wonderful if more commercial or (Normal) sheep breeders found out what wonderful maternal sires Zwartbles are. Please do go to one or both of the Zwartbles sales.
What a treat for Iris to learn with her aunt life at the farm! Thank you Suzanna!
[…] Suzanna Tweets for the @ZwartblesIE account. She is (aside from an amazing photographer and writer) a sheep farmer. She blogs about that here. […]
Perfect, lovely send off x
Illustrious photos to illuminated musings.
Wow, I would never have guessed! That’s amazing. Not only will I now be looking closely at stone walls thanks to all the moss etc that I want to photograph, now I’ll be looking for fossils! Thanks for sharing that, lovely post 🙂
That is so cool! I love stone walls even more now 🙂
[…] https://zwartblesireland.com/2012/the-aga-saga-a-lamb-saved-twitter-support/ […]
Great photos Suzanna and I look forward to your next ones too. You have created a fabulous product and I love that social media has helped build awareness of it, to the extent you are going to London Design Week. Great achievement and story – well done!
Best of luck Suzanna…. will be watching with bated breath 🙂
Good luck….I am very excited for you 🙂
This is the best blog I have ever read. Such a delight. Created right from the heart. Good luck in London. Awaiting pictures !
Have tremendous fun…. hope to see you there.
Great looking forward to seeing you.
I already have some zwartbles and would like to source some more. Are there more sales planned for this year in Ireland North or South. The breed has amazed me and it is the leanest sweetest meat Ive ever eaten.
There are 2 sales up in Northern Ireland both at the Ballymena Livestock Mart a sale of pedigree Zwartbles in-lamb and all female sale on Monday 11th November 2013 and then another on on Monday 25th November for commercial Zwartbles. I do not think there will be any more Zwartbles sales in Southern Ireland this year. Look at the Zwartbles breeders list on this website for a breeder near you who might have some stock for sale. I will be having 5 -6 in lamb ewes for sale later this year once they have been scanned in lamb if your interested.
Hi Suzanna, more than likely a stupid question but anyway, can people from the south buy at the sales in Ballymena?
O, and do you expect there to be many zwartble ewe lambs for sale on the 11th? Thanks!
I think Judy would be able to answer that question.
I really couldn’t say. I you got in touch with Judy Maxwell she might know firstname.lastname@example.org I’m sorry I couldn’t be of more help.
great report – well done
Thank you. Your stand was very good covering the many good points of the Zwartbles sheep.
Good report and pictures. I agree with your comments about maps and food. We also had trouble finding the horse ploughing (didn’t help that it had already finished though!).Also more variety of food would have been nice.
So very glad you agree and also that I wasn’t the only one having problems finding the horse ploughing.
I am coming to see you on Friday morning and looking forward to it. Plan to be with you around 10.00 / 10.30. I have mislaid your mobile number. So sorry and wondered if you could send it to me. Also I just wondered if you could send me that lovely photo of your sheep having a look at blankets in basket and one of blankets being woven. I would really like to feature images in my forthcoming newsletter. Thanks so much. Emma (I am of Ireland)
Great see you then I will text you so you have my number. Yes I will send you those photographs.
[…] https://zwartblesireland.com/2013/i-bite-the-bullet-today-vaccinating-for-the-sbv-virus/ […]
This is lovely, Suzanna! You are so lucky to have so much history embedded in your stones. I do too have a stone wall surrounding my property but I was only able to find 1 stone with trilobites in it.
Great piece – yes 19 flocks altogether and all sheep to be proud of! John and have have received wonderful hospitality and made some lovely new friends. The thing about Zwartbles breeders is their passion for these stylish, majestic sheep – faces light-up with smiles and pride at the mention of the Z word.
Thank you Judy. Glad to hear you had a good trip viewing so many flocks.
Lovely post and gorgeous pics
Thank you Lorna
I used this blog entry to teach my Leaving Cert Agricultural Science class about sponging today. It’s very easy to understand and the photos are a great step by step way of showing how it is done. They all had a very clear idea of what happens after they viewed your website!
Fantastic and thank you for letting me know. I’m sure they had great fun with all those very graphic photos of the step by step process. They might well learn about the other side with the Castration post I put up. https://zwartblesireland.com/2013/ram-lamb-castration/
Another use for black wool not just pristeen enough for spinning – line hanging baskets to keep the soil in the basket and to mulch around plants, it works a treat and as it’s black it blends in with surroundings where white would not look right!!
I love it!
Wonderful colours and scenes.
Really beautiful images.
I love this time of year too!
Which one is dominant? We usually put the two serving yearling bulls together at the end of the season (one cleans up the cows, the other the heifers) and they fight for a while until one gives in. Usually no damage is done but this year one was pretty miserable for a few days and we thought he might be brain damaged but he recovered with some anti-inflammatory treatment. All those hormones!
These guys fight like billy O when they meet after being apart, so must confine them when they come together after being on their own with the ewes. They are fine now, settled in their paddock at peace with each other.
You do Ireland, America and the lovely Zwartbles Sheep breed proud!
Always look forward to your photos and prose.
Best of the New Year to you!
Thank you so much Jan. Happy New Year!!!!
Good to see a new determination to blog they all make good reading. Well done on getting 3rd place in the large flock section recently.
Thank you very much on both counts but I didn’t get third for Largest Zwartbles flock in Ireland. My stock ram the ‘Welchman’ came second 2nd in All Ireland Flock Competition. I believe the Irish Farmers Journal had a typo.
Just stunning Suzanne, thanks for sharing!
Hope you have been keeping well, lovely pictures with your horses, did you know that the horse may not be just yawning? Some people believe that horses have powers of healing and this horse could actually be clearing your aura and/or chakras. New to this myself so not entirely sure of the thinking behind it, had you heard about this? Breda
I have no idea about that. It is also a sign that they are welcoming you and relaxed in your company like greeting an old friend. You see it in the wild so not sure about the aura/chakra thing.
Hi Suzanna, love that blog, makes for a great tale. We also love
the names. I had been looking toward Peru for some inspiration with names this past few years but didn’t persist.
Looks like the boys are settling in well, glad to see that..
Chat soon. Paul/Charlotte +co.
How lovely, and what a wonderful way to begin the Year of the Horse! Thank you for sharing 🙂
Wonderful photo story, where is Silver now ?
Sadly Silver is with us no more. She had to be put down as she was in loads of pain due to an old injury. It was a very very sad day.
Such skill in your cat shepherd 🙂
Thank you he is an excellent overseer
Your shepherd cat looks like the (almost) identical twin of our Maine Coon cat Viggo. Viggo is a gentle giant with a heart of gold, very talkative and he treats our dogs in the same way as Mr B treats the sheep.
Thoroughly enjoyed hearing about Bodacious and also your two Alpaca. Thanks!
He tried at least. Maybe a little to late but maybe he was having an off day haha. Xx
Hi,are you collecting zwartble
wool this year (2014)
Love your twitter feed. You put joy into so many lives and have become part of our everyday lives. Thank you.
Thank you so much for letting me know. Very glad your enjoying the twitter.
Thank you for this simple explanation. My daughter is doing land based science at school and has been involved in sponging – this has explained to me exactly what she was explaining!
Photography workshops: if you’re doing any of these in 2015, please would you email me? I’ve long looked for an excuse to visit Ireland and could do with some advice on photography, as I’m not very good.
Great I will do so. Keep a look out on this web site as I will write about when the next ones will be.
Hi, Where in Ireland are you? Do you allow visitors? Thank you
Our farm is in County Kilkenny. Yes we do except visitors but by appointment only.
Can Americans buy your calendar with american dollars some how?
Yes Jessica, you can via paypal which is how we do all our website trans actions
I really love your website! Especially your twitter feeds.
Please let me know if you are selling next year’s calendar. I would be very interested!
You’re very kind. the new 2017 calendar has not yet been printed. I am only now starting to collect up the images that we will use in it.
TYVM you’ve solved all my prebmols
Great glad to hear it.
Hi. This is volcat from Twitter. I’m a copy editor at a newspaper and where I work, you would have gotten the photo credit and you would have definitely been mentioned in the article. It’s actually the reporter’s responsibility to make sure your name is in the story (and spelled correctly), but a good copy editor would have asked who owned the farm. As for the photo credit, the photo editor or reporter may not have told anyone you took the photo. That’s not something a copy editor would question, unless there was no credit at all.
Thank you so much for your response. As I don’t working the that industry I really didn’t know who was at fault. Thank you very much for that instructive information and how it should have worked.
If they had contacted you, you could’ve given them the correct spelling of the breed (it’s ‘zwart bles’, rhymes with ‘cart mess’, not ‘zwartble’ rhymes with ‘marble’) as well. Now they not only used one of you pictures without mentioning your name, but they also made themselves look foolish by not even knowing what they are talking about. As Mark Twain said it, “if you don’t read newspapers you’re uninformed. If you do read them you’re misinformed.”
What a lovely interesting post. I jumped to read it when I saw it on Irish Bloggers page as I love the stone wall at the back of our house and while fixing it back up one day I found a beautiful fossil too. It’s perfectly shiny almost marble like right in the middle of a rough stone. like a giant curled up snail. It sits on our mantlepiece now and everyone’s fascinated that it came out of our back wall:-)
Thank you Marie; so glad you liked my post about fossils
Thanks for those wonderful picture
Any recent news on Zwartbles in the US?
I think the ban in shipping to the USA is still being held by DEFRA
Thank you for the info on how to tie a fleece. Our fairs(USA) require them to be tied with paper twine, but your info on sorting out parts to discard, and how to fold and roll the fleece is getting us ready to enter. Great pictures.
Oh Suzanna – I have so enjoyed your Twitter posts; they are a calm in the regular storm that is much of our world these days. This morning via one of your Tweets I found your web site, and just read “Desiderata”. Thank you for sharing this, and for the lovely photos accompanying the poem. It clearly speaks to you, and the message speaks to me loudly this morning. I will continue to draw inspiration and laughter and peace from your Tweets. Thank you so very much.
Thank you so much Maria. I am so glad to hear that you are enjoying my twitter account postings.
Fond regards Suzanna
how long do you leave it before putting the weaned lambs back with their mothers? i’ve been told 6 weeks – do you agree?
6 to 8 weeks I keep them separate making sure the ewes have completely dried off their milk production before allowing lambs back in with them.
What happened to ewes if sponge not removed? String can fall off with sponge still inside?
It will not harm the ewe but fall out in time
I had no idea the blankets would tell a story!!
Hi, I’m installing a foot bath in my sheep farm and I can’t find for the life of me how often I should foodbath my sheep (once a week? Daily?) They do not suffer from foot rot but I’m hoping it could help with some lameness and general health.
If you don’t have foot rot that is fantastic. You only need to have them go through or stand in foot bath with zinc sulphate when they are lame with scald. Make sure they have a place to stand for the zinc sulphate to dry this is what knocks scald on the head. If you flock is going through a bad bout of scald if you foot bath them have then stand 5 minutes in bath so it soaks in.
This is such a beautiful poem and always been my “go to” read whenever I need some sort of comfort or prop. I am 70 next year so have been going to it for a long time! Thank you for adding the beautiful pictures to it, they are just perfect.
X for Bodacious
Thank you so glad to hear you enjoyed it.
Sale 8th August northern ireland could you send me a catalogue
So sorry I only just got to your request. I am assuming you got the information you needed by some other means.
Sobbing in grief along with you. My dearest sympathies Suzanna. Such a beautiful send off for such a special kitty & great helper to you. Rest In Peace Bodacious.
I cannot express how sad I am. There will never be another shepherd cat. Thank you for sharing the life of Bodacious with us and for sharing his death so we can mourn with you and celebrate his life. I cannot believe how much I will miss him….a cat I never met.
He will live forever in our hearts; we who have followed his journey for so long. Thank you for the beautiful story and tribute. Please find some solace in shared admiration for this magnificent cat.
So sad for you what a beautifully written epitaph.
I am truly sorry for your loss. Thank you for sharing with us his life, and his final passing. His personality shone through your words.
Dear Suzanna and all your family – human and animal and birds and trees on your farm – I am deeply sorry Bodacious has gone. This is possibly the most beautiful tribute and memorial I’ve ever read. Bodacious would love this and be honoured. He was a rare bold yet lovely cat and a brave wee shepherd. Sending loving thoughts to him at rest. And to everyone at your farm, my thoughts and heart remain with you over these days. Love from Canada.
Thank you for all this posting that I and others could share this heartbreaking news. I’ve been a dog and cat person my whole 81 years and can feel what you have been through. Cats so often are beyond help before they let us know something is wrong. Been through it more than once. Bodacious was part of my life and am so saddened with his passing. But I have his book and his memories. Hugs……Naomi
I am so so Sorry for your Loss of your Darling Furbaby Fly High the Gentle Baby ❤️
I am so sorry for your loss, and feel it too (both in Bodacious’s passing and in the loss of my own dear Petra, something over three years ago).
He had a good life, and the gentlest passing you could give him.
I’m so glad to have ‘met’ him through Twitter and your book, and he lives in the memory of all who met him this way. Thank you for sharing his life, and yours, with us.
I am so sorry, he was just gorgeous and so loved. I felt like I knew him and I know how hard it is to lose a beloved animal. Sending lots of love. Julie
Gloria, in her comment above, has said it well, for me and many others. Can not help but smile through the tears as I think of the Bodacious story.
This feels like a personal loss to me, but it’s far fsr worse for you all. A cat in a million. Wishing you strength as you process this. Irene
I read it knowing it would leave me sobbing. Our family recently had to say goodbye to a beloved cat, too. Losing a pet is one of the saddest things. May you always remember him as he was.
I’m so sorry for your loss. He was a magnificant cat.
I am so sorry for the loss of your friend and companion Boadcious, a cat of inestimable character. I am in tears not only for Bodacious but for myself as my older cat Brontë has recently been through surgery & although recovering I can imagine how much I would miss my best friend, as you must miss yours xx
I am much sadder than I have any right to be, as I live in Chicago and never met Bodacious. I have tears rolling down my face: largely because he is gone, but also because you’ve expressed the events and your feelings so beautifully. My heart breaks for you. I just love the burial arrangements you made for him: I cried a little harder when I saw his lovely and meaningful grave gifts. Bodacious and his adventures have provided hours of distraction and stress relief from my urban life, and shown me a way of life I didn’t know existed. I have enjoyed reading and rereading his book, and am so glad to have it. I am sure Ovenmitt and Inca will prove their worth as they carry on. I do hope you and Inca will continue to share your lives with us. Sending love and hugs.
You gave Bodacious the wonderful sendoff he so richly deserved. He passed in his sleep without pain, and then that unquenchable spirit of his visited his favorite places before he came to rest in that beautiful spot with the symbols of his life around him. I never met him, yet I’ve followed his exploits with interest and pleasure, and I’ve cried at your account of the end of his life. So many condolences to you-I know you will miss him terribly. Remember, though, how much joy he brought to so many and to you. He was a one-of-a-kind cat!
My heart aches for you. I am so glad there is family Near to support you. You will miss him everywhere for a long time but he will be remembered more than any cat I have ever heard of by so many people. Take care Susanna. XXX Kate
Oh my oh my. It’s so terribly hard when they go, as they do, before us. What a beautiful sendoff. Condolences from afar …
So sorry about your loss. We loved Bodacious.
Edouard-ze-cat and Philippe
I’m so sorry for your loss. I didn’t know Bodacious in life, but in his passing he is very vivid to me. I’m sorry that your connection with him had to end while you are apart, but I believe that you had the chance to give him a decent death and you took it, to your credit.
Oh, how my heart goes out to you! Bodacious was so very special, but oh how it hurts, it hurts when our furry family cross the Rainbow Bridge. I pray your memories will give you some comfort at this most sad time.
I am so sorry for your loss. There is no bond like the bond between a cat and his or her human. There is no love like the love shared between a cat and his human. These things are unique because they are pure and unconditional. As time goes by, the grief and pain will fade, but never really leave, because he took a piece of your heart when he passed and left a piece of his heart with you.
I weep. Lunching with your parents tomorrow.
Sending hugs to you from California. Such a hard thing when these little souls leave us. I wish you peace and solace. I’m sure B. was quite pleased with his pick of human. ~ Jacqueline H.
Discovering Bodacious and his wonderful family and farm has brought me so much joy. I mourn Bodacious as if he were my very own cat. Thank you Suzannna for sharing your beautiful, meaningful and very special spot in this world.
I am so very sorry to hear this news, and so very sorry for your loss. I am heartbroken for you and with you, though I never had the pleasure of meeting Bodacious. Thank you for sharing Bodacious with all of us – may you find comfort in the knowledge that there are many of us who mourn with you and for you. Keeping you and the rest of your feline & canine family in my thoughts and close to my heart.
I m heartbroken for you & with you… I am so very sorry for your loss. Thank you for sharing Bodacious with us – may you find some comfort in knowing that you are not alone in your mourning. Bodacious was an amazing soul, and he was blessed to have been loved, cared for, and attended to by you. Keeping you and your family – feline & canine included – in my thoughts and close to my heart.
I’m so sorry. I’m sitting here holding my 2 girls. Just crying.
A beautiful hommage for a beautiful animal. I cried my eyes out reading this. I’ve lost my cat to exactly the same thing……….rest in peace precious Bodacious❤❤❤??
So sorry to mhear of the loss of your cat Bodacious. Over 20 years ago, I too had a grey tiger striped cat with the same name. He was a gift from a friend & our nickname for him was Face since he had such a cute face. I would also call him “Mi perro, since he was very doglike. He could fetch rubber bands, rolled up tea bags with a little catnip in them , came when you called him, & meowed when you said “Hi Face ” to him. He was a mighty hunter & he once even chased a German Shepherd down the street which was hilarious to watch. When I found out he was terminally ill, I cried a lot , knowing we had to put him down, but HE was the one who would sit next to me in kitty bread loaf position to comfort me. Naturally losing him was just devastating, but I believe he’s on the other side of the rainbow bridge, & I look forward to seeing him & all the other cats I have loved in the past as well as all my loved ones that have gone on to another realm. I will never forget my mighty dog, as I know you won’t forget your feline friend either.
So sorry for your loss. I loved following your adventures together and it’s a very sad and sudden end for a most wonderful cat. I wish you blessings and comfort at this awful time.
I am crying here in my kitchen with my cats by me. So sorry to hear Bodacious passed . He gave me such pleasure and laughs every day . He was so special . Mind yourself. I love all the rest if the gang so surround yourself with them and their love. Maura xx
A beautiful tribute to a wonderful cat. I also sorry for your loss. Thank you for sharing a bit of his life with us over the past years.
What a beautiful send off for one very special moggie. We animal lovers all share your grief but what wonderful memories you have. He was one very lucky boy.
I am so saddened by this loss, and I was very moved by your tribute to him — particularly the line about “his pain muffled by quiet enjoyment of companionship.” I’ve no doubt the richness, warmth, and peace of his life on the farm sustained him at the end and gave him energy to continue on.
I am so, so sorry for your loss. I never met Bodacious, but I cried my eyes out. Heaven knows how you must have cried. He will live on in your wonderful stories.
I’m sorry for your loss. Thank you for sharing your adventures with Bodacious with us. A truly remarkable cat! His spirit will roam hill and meadow freely forever now.
So sad news Brought tears to my eyes He ll never be forgotten but it’s an incredible sad time I know on my own experience
This must be heartbreaking for all of you. Bodacious was one amazing cat, who gave laughter and joy to everyone who knew him around the world. I’m so glad I got to know him online and through his book. RIP wondeful Bodacious.
My condolences to all of you. Much love xx
Thank you for sharing his life and death. Bodacious always reminded me of my cat Tootsie who died several years ago. You never forget them they are with you always. You gave a beautiful tribute to him. It will never be the same bug the others will keep you going especially Inca. Look after yourself. Xxx
Bodacious – Beloved friend and companion. We give our hearts to our animals and our hearts break when they leave us. What happiness and companionship you had – a life of joy and pleasure for a very special cat, whose character has enriched many of your followers. ‘Tis a huge gap in your life. Be comforted by the memories. With love.
This the most beautiful and dignified tribute to a truly remarkable feline. Gone, but never forgotten. God bless him that he came into your life.
Suzanna, I send my deepest condolences to you and all your beautiful wonderful peaceable kingdom as you mourn the death of your most beloved cat shepherd Bodacious. I woke to the news this morning, for a moment not believing the words I had just read. Bodacious was so very special, unusual, bold and proud of his kingdom and his role. He will be missed beyond words. This was the most amazing tribute I have ever read, and I thank you for sharing his life and news of his passing with us. We all have lost a precious friend, and you will be in our hearts and prayers in the days ahead.
Rest in peace, Bodacious.
I will miss this boy! Reading the news early this morning in bed with my own boy purring against me as I cry. You honored him well. I’ll spend some extra time outside with my Oscar today in his memory.?
I’m so sad to hear about the passing of Bodacious. I loved following your slices of life on Twitter and thank you for sharing his adventures with us to the very end. You gave him the best possible life a cat could have and I could think of no better or more moving sendoff. It is never easy to lose a friend like this, two legged or four. Sunny days to you and yours.
I am so sorry for your loss – in my time I have parted ways with two dogs and six cats and every single time it is a wrenching loss.
All we can do is love them for the time they grace us with their presence.
Bodacious obviously had a wonderful life with you and his furry companions and flock and there a a lot of us who loved hearing about his adventures.
You gave him a wonderful send off and did the best possible thing you could have for him.
A truly beautiful tribute to Bodacious. My heart cries for you xxx
I couldn’t read to the end as I am heartbroken for you, I shall try again later. Love to you and all your fur family.
Your heart cat…I had a special one too…where I was he was, Mr Moodles..thought I’d die of grief, I still feel him jumping onto my bed at night & snuggling up…I hope they,re both together, no words will ease the grief, but in time this beautiful Tribute will bring you comfort….so lovely, thinking of you at this heartbreaking time xxxx
My heart breaks for you. The most difficult thing we face in life is grief. Your words, your tribute to your loyal friend and the beautiful memorial only deepen my understanding of your incredible bond you share(intentional:it will always remain in the present tense) with Bodacious. May God grant you strength at this time.Thank you for sharing this special being with us. Love to you and all the members of your peaceable kingdom.
My heart breaks with you. The beauty Bodacious brought me through your eyes and his, is a highlight to the day. Much love to you. Hugs
I am so, so sorry for your lost. Rest peacefully, Bodacious, you very good cat.
I am so, so sorry for your loss. Rest peacefully, Bodacious, you very good cat.
So sorry for your loss
I never knew Bodacious before today. Just happened to be on Twitter and followed the link. I, too, am weeping, sitting here at my desk in the office. A beautiful love story, and a beautiful family of fauna.
It’s hard to imagine the world without Bodacious.
So sad thinking of you
I send my deepest sympathies. Please know that your loss of Bodacious is felt across the world. We grieve with you. Much love and hugs from Virginia.
Oh Dear Bodacious how much you will be missed. Thank you so very much for sharing your life on the farm with us all these years. I was always happy to see when you had posted a message, or one of your beautiful pictures, giving me a glimpse into your wonderful farm life; an inspiration from a life well worth living. Thank you Susanna for taking us along with his last days here, for his kind and thoughtful grave gifts, and his beautiful resting place. I can only imagine how much you feel the loss ( I cry when I see the pictures above and think of him having left this world, and I’ve never met him). Greetings and Love, Roland Bol (shepherd cat twitter follower of several years)
I am so, so sorry. My heart is breaking for you. Take care. Sent from California with love.
A beautiful obituary for a truly special puss. He was a gift from heaven, and that makes parting with him all the more difficult. It was fate that you would both come together in Kilkenny that day. Take comfort from the fact tbat you were his his special person whose company he chose above everyone else even through the worst of the weather! He is now forever in good weather & reunited with Oscar. A big hug to you now & for the days ahead xxx
Goodbye, sweet kitty. He was one of a kind.
I’m so very sorry to hear you have lost such a splendid and magnificent companion. I’ve loved seeing his life of work and pleasure unfold and I’ll miss his beautiful face. My deepest sympathy is with you and your extended amazing family. Your tribute to him was very moving – he was unique. I’m certain he will rest well indeed.
Such a loss. God speed Bodacious.
“When our body is no longer able to perform its functions in the natural world but is separated from our spirit, which is called dying, we still continue to be ourselves and to live. We ourselves live, because we live not from the body but from the spirit, since it is the spirit which thinks and loves in us, and thought with affection makes us what we are.
Remember, friends, that everyone is born for heaven; and that they are received into heaven who receive heaven in themselves while in this world.”
– Emanuel Swedenborg
Tanks for the help
So glad to have known him; so terribly sad about his passing. Thank goodness for Ovenmitt and the rest of your menagerie who will keep you company, but there was only one Bodacious.
We are strangers, but I follow you on Twitter (which I only view infrequently). I have only just seen this news of Bodacious, and just wanted to offer you my absolutely heartfelt condolences and (respectfully), on behalf of Bodacious, what I feel sure would be heartfelt gratitude for the honour of such a beautiful farewell. What a wonderful Being he was. He lives on in people’s Hearts. Namaste ?
These two combined, truly , hit my heart and my soul. I would love to be able to purchase a copy . The words and photos are Spectacular together! Thank you for sharing your, life, words and photos with us.
I’m crying from the beautiful tribute you’ve given to this amazing cat. I feel your pain, as I mourn my lost friends as well, and have lost several recently. May you get comfort knowing that this fantastic cat was so happy in his life with you, and free in a way most cats do not get to have. You inspire me with your posts. Please keep doing it!
Such a beautiful and unique cat, Bodacious was. Thank you for letting those of us who are so far away share in knowing him online, and seeing the beauty of your surroundings and your lovely farewell tributes for Bodacious. I will certainly remember & think of you all. <3
I read this some days ago but wasn’t capable of commenting as this saddened me so much. It’s such a beautiful tribute. I’m so sad this beautiful cat had to go, but happy he had such an amazing life thanks to you. If this is hard for me, a stranger, I can not imagine how heartbreaking it must be for you. I wish you strength and light. Thank you for introducing us to this extraordinary cat. Blessings from Switzerland.
Have only just learnt of this. I am weeping as I read your beautiful tribute to your fine, majestic Bodacious. He must be missed by you all so much. Love and thoughts from Bere Island.
Only found out the sad news yesterday. Dear Bodacious, your book is by my bed. I did want to meet you but I will have to make do with your book and watching the videos. Maybe I will meet you in another life. RIP xxxxx
God bless all creatures great and small.
I am so sorry to read this news. We all loved following along with his adventures. Thank you for sharing this beautiful tribute. He will live on through the book and in our hearts. He was some cat.
Just finished your book. RIP Bodacious, We love you ❤️❤️❤️❤️
My daughter Rebecca has finished reading ‘Bodacious’ Rebecca tells me we can visit Suzanna’s farm. I am wondering how I can arrange this.
Thanking you in advance,
Good to see behind the scenes, great post , very informative … thank you
I have just learnt of this. I am feeling devastated of the loss of Bodacious. I always felt a kind of closeness to him. I just can’t imagine how heartbreaking it must be for you. Bodacious was truly one-of-a-kind and will sorely missed and never forgotten. Thank you so much for sharing his adventures with me. Its brought me so many smiles when I have been depressed. Sent with warm regards and love, from the East Village, NYC, USA.
I am so sorry for your loss. Bodacious had an amazing life. He brought joy to so many people all over the world and he had a life filled with joy. So many animals live and die in the world never knowing love or comfort, and they fight to survive every day and die alone in pain. Bodacious instead had a life filled with light and love and comfort and purpose and when he died he did so without pain and with dignity and peace. He is so lucky to have been so loved, and to be so mourned. You gave him the best of everything and he blessed us all with his presence.
I’m so sorry Suzanna, I just read your loving tribute to Bodacious. Thank you for sharing all the wonderful stories.
Love to you and all your lovely animals.
I’m currently reading ‘Bodacious the Shepard Cat’ and am loving it. That’s what has brought me to this website. I would like to enquire about the postage fee to New Zealand, that’s if the 2020 calendar is out.
It is truly saddening to hear about the passing of Bodacious
I just finished reading Bodacious The Shepherd Cat and decided to go online and see what else I could find out about Bodacious and you. A lovely book/story you have written via Bodacious. I am heart broken he had passed this past February. Heartbroken for him and especially for you, Suzanna Crampton. I am so sorry for the loss. RIP Bodacious and be well Suzanna.
I read a book, it was a Christmas present from my husband. I am so infinitely sad that Bodacious went over the Rainbow Bridge. It’s nice that they let us share in his life.
read your book, it was a Christmas present from my husband. I am so infinitely sad that Bodacious went over the Rainbow Bridge. It’s nice that they let us share in his life.
I just happened to stumble upon your twitter account. I saw this story about your cat. This was a beautiful tribute to your sweet cat. Now I want to read the book. I hope to one day visit Ireland. Maybe I can see this beautiful scenery. ❤️❤️❤️
I have been following along for a while now. I am so very sorry for your loss. Such a beautiful companion and lovely kitty soul who will be dearly missed. You have given Bodacious a heartfelt, loving tribute (brought me to sobbing too) for a life well-lived. Peace to Bodacious and to all of you who shared his life. ??
I am still sad for you. What a great cat Bodacious was!
have just read the last lines of your book. bodacious was a very special being and my tears are running. you gave him such a loving goodbye. I will never forget his story.
I just read Bodacious’ last day and your beautiful tribute to him. I now understand how much he meant and can now recognize his lasting presence and impact on all the happenings at Black Sheep Farm. Here’s to Bodacious and to you!
Oh I am so sorry I am sitting here with tears in my eyes … I know only too well what a big hole they leave when they go …..
huge virtual hug to you x
How many mil does a sheep need.and where exactly does the injection go to work properly
I used 1.5mil but often they recommend 2ml
Dear Suzanna, having just read ‘Bodacious’ I have been in tears reading your lovely words at losing your wonderful boy. Like others I know what a huge hole these wonderful companions leave in our lives. With love xx
I’ve just watched the story of your beautiful boy, Bodacious and had an awful feeling that he had died as you kept saying how he “was” such a special cat.. He WAS beautiful, and special.. Maine Coons, Norwegian Forests, and Siberian cats all have this dog-like quality about them. They act more like dogs, than cats. They are very vocal wth many tones and inflections, plus they are loving and loyal.. I lost my Fluffy and Sammy one in 2018, and one in 2019, and their loss is unspeakable.. I have others, whom I love dearly, but these fluffy, pantalooned, loving, talkative cats are special. Rest in peace handsome Beaudacious ????
have you any yarn for sale?
Yes indeed we do. Several kinds of Alpaca and Zwartbles sheep yarns. Go to our shop page where you can order them.
We’ve never met Suzanna but I’m so sorry I didn’t realize Bodacious was gone. I remember that song, I hadn’t been listening to the program really it was just background, but I was stuck to the kitchen floor with the beauty of it. It was haunting but her voice was so clear I never heard anything quite like it. Just shows you, you never know what someone else is going through. He sounded like a wonderful friend and companion. You were so blessed, I guess you both were.
I was very lucky to have had such an extraordinary cat
Dear Suzanna, I was just reading the part of your book about Bodacious; and, how someone had recorded a video for “his” Social Media followers. So, I looked for it on Google; and, very sadly, instead, I found a link to this RIP page. I am terribly sorry for your Loss of such a special Shepherd Cat, as Bodacious was! I still have about 100 pages to read in “his” book. But, I will be reading them with sadness in my heart; knowing that he has gone to live with the many special cats that I have known & raised, throughout my lifetime. But, I believe that they are in in Heaven, with our Lord Jesus; because He created these precious kitty cats for us to raise & know, throughout our lives. Thank you for sharing “his story” with us, in your book! May God bless you; and, maybe give you another special cat, that is a little bit like Bodacious. May God continue to bless you and your family and your sheep and other animals on your special farm! Sincerely yours, Jennifer Olmstead, Wisconsin, USA
“Loose” ear tags? You mean lose.
True but sometimes being a dyslexic means spellings can be quite wrong for intended word. Like which witch is which or how many twos are too many to remember.