Sheep farm still going strong
It’s lambing season at Stardust Sheep Farm southeast of Lincolnville, and the sounds of lambs bleating for their mothers fill the air.
On this bright, sun-filled March morning, the large sheep barn has a unique sheep smell and is full of pens that hold ewes and their babies. Bits of wool are scattered on fresh straw that covers the barn floor. Fat cats can be seen roaming here and there throughout the barn, keeping mice in check.
A couple of pens hold milk goats for suckling lambs that need extra nourishment. Another pen holds orphan lambs that drink milk from buckets fitted with nipples.
The sheep will be turned outside later that morning. Some will run on wheat pasture, seeking out scarce shoots of green in a powdery dry field.
Llamas Chocolate and Blacky will stand guard among them, always on the lookout for possible danger. A couple of white, fluffy guard dogs also roam the premises.
Many of the lambs will be sold by their owner, Sherry Nelson, as show lambs. She is one of the top breeders of Dorset lambs in the United States. She also raises blackface and crossbred speckle lambs.
The best lambs will be sold through an online auction house as well as locally. Buyers from Kansas and surrounding states will converge on the farm April 8, looking to purchase 4-H show lambs for $200 or more.
Nelson will sell her highest-bred lambs to people who show nationally. Those lambs will bring from $1,000 to $4,000.
Whatever lambs remain will be taken to an auction barn and sold as feeders.
Nelson puts a lot into selecting outstanding rams and ewes and producing outstanding lambs.
“I don’t ever sell sale barn lambs to kids,” Nelson said. “I want them to be proud of their animals in the show ring.”
Last modified March 15, 2018