Hi from Washington state!

nahala

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Hi everyone! Made my way over here from browsing backyard chickens. I recently inherited my grandma's property which comes with a half acre pasture. It's hard a host of animals on it over the decades, everything from cows, to sheep, to goats, to llamas, to horses. Currently it is home to my two African geese and two runner ducks. And two outdoor cats, a border collie, and well soon have a newfoundlander pup come January. Oh, there's 4 indoor cats as well.

Anyway, It's a pretty lush pasture. Irrigated on a timer, three to four times a week. It really got out of hand this year with no animals on it. I had 8ft tall prickly lettuce everywhere, along with mustard. The grass, which looks like a variety of everything from barnyard grass to barley and lord knows what else was as tall as I was. It's kinda a mess.

I'm looking for a couple of grazers to put out there to keep it down. I've raised sheep in the past, so I'm familiar with them.Ive been leaning to hair sheep, no more than 2. But I'm keeping my options open. No large livestock, like horses or full size cows. I'm open to adoption as well. I considered maybe a pair of donkeys, but my understanding is lush pasture isn't great for them? Goats are kinda out due to their ninja abilities, though I do love them, especially pygmies. My aunt used to raise them. Not too interested in pigs. A mini cow maybe? The animals would be pets. My parents have an acre and a half pasture I can rotate the animals to if necessary, though I'd like to keep that to a minimum.

Any suggestions? I'll be adding a couple more geese and ducks next year as well. They seem to prefer the yard though, and I enjoy the security the geese provide. I posted some hilarious beware of geese signs and it has been pretty funny the reactions I get. People are irrationally afraid of the little stinkers. 😆

Thanks for having me!
 

Baymule

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Welcome to BYH! I raise Katahdin hair sheep and love them. Since all you need is a couple to keep the grass down, I recommend 2 wethers. They can be pets, with no reproductive hormones to stir things up. If you knitted or crocheted, I’d say get a couple of fine wool sheep, learn to shear and spin, and have them contribute to your hobby.

I love my Katahdin sheep, no shearing, parasite resistant, (not all are though) low maintenance and most of mine are pets. They mug for attention, paw my leg if I stop petting them (no shorts in the sheep lot) love to be brushed, scratched and go bonkers for animal crackers.

2 wethers would give you what you want and make delightful pets. I keep a chair on the outside of the pen so they don’t beat it up, lift it over the fence and sit in it. I’ll have 5-6 sheep at a time, all wanting attention. It’s a peaceful way to end the day.
 

SageHill

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Welcome to BYH!
Like @Baymule said two wethers would be great for what you're looking for.
I have friends in WA, Gig Harbor and a few other places up there that have sheep.
 

nahala

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Welcome to BYH! I raise Katahdin hair sheep and love them. Since all you need is a couple to keep the grass down, I recommend 2 wethers. They can be pets, with no reproductive hormones to stir things up. If you knitted or crocheted, I’d say get a couple of fine wool sheep, learn to shear and spin, and have them contribute to your hobby.

I love my Katahdin sheep, no shearing, parasite resistant, (not all are though) low maintenance and most of mine are pets. They mug for attention, paw my leg if I stop petting them (no shorts in the sheep lot) love to be brushed, scratched and go bonkers for animal crackers.

2 wethers would give you what you want and make delightful pets. I keep a chair on the outside of the pen so they don’t beat it up, lift it over the fence and sit in it. I’ll have 5-6 sheep at a time, all wanting attention. It’s a peaceful way to end the day.
Thank you! I actually got two benches so I can sit by the duck pond and feed my goobers snacks in the evening. In the summer I'll buy them watermelon and watch them demolished it. lol

I previously had Suffolk sheep, but it's been years. They'd "help" me do work outside. I'm leaning to hair sheep since I don't want to have the hassle of shearing. I'm in a drier climate and have been leaning to katahdins or st croix. Katahdins seem pretty popular here, along with blackbellies and dorpers. That is hilarious they love animal crackers! Thank you for sharing your experience with the katahdins. Having friendly sheep makes it so much easier to care for them. :)
 

nahala

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Welcome to BYH!
Like @Baymule said two wethers would be great for what you're looking for.
I have friends in WA, Gig Harbor and a few other places up there that have sheep.
Thank you! I'm in the opposite side of the state! Gig Harbor is beautiful. My sister lives over in Tacoma. I'm on the opposite side of the state, where it's pretty much sagebrush, sand, and tumbleweeds. It gets pretty hot here in the summer. I think we hit 115 this year. Now it's snowing. lol

There's quite a few sheep out this way too. More cows though.

Wethers definitely seem to be the way to go. I've got a big old apple tree and old barn for shade, plenty of water, and a pasture on steroids. There's also an old llama neighbor who might appreciate the company too. I'd put him on our pasture, but he is definitely not dog friendly.

Going to keep an eye out this spring/summer and see if I can get a pair to join the zoo I think. :)
 

canesisters

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Hello from VA!
Congratulations on your new adventure. I've heard that Highland cattle graze on brush like goats. Maybe a mini highland?
 

purplequeenvt

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Get at least 3 sheep. As I’m sure you already know, sheep are a flock animal. They are ok as a pair, but a group of 3 or more is better for their mental health.

Like others have suggested, if you aren’t planning to breed and just want them as pasture pets, get a few wethers. If you don’t mind bottle feeding, you might be able to find bottle ram lambs to start off with. Then they’d be extra friendly.
 
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