SageHill Ranch Journal

SageHill

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It sounds like you need a “more”deterrent, like a permanent type fix. That’s too bold and too close.

I’ve seen coyotes in my front field, it sure is nice to have it fenced in. I’ve seen tracks at the pond and right up against the fence in the back field. It’s going to take awhile for me to get that field fence line cleared and fenced.

Coyotes howl at night and all 4 of my dogs howl with them.
Yeah definitely too close. Working on a better deterrent. Didn’t have any yesterday thank goodness. Though I’m ever on the look out. Scan close far mid range repeat. It’s life. I have briefly thought of an LGD. But I’ve got two strikes against me I think. One I don’t think I’ve got the mindset to train one - my automatic response to situations dog related is more than likely contrary to what they need. Second is Murphy whose property borders three of our five sides. He would be a definite consideration.
DH has been looking at deterrents - now that’s a whole new rabbit hole to go down! Who’d a thunk!!
 

SageHill

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There may be holes in it or under it for the coyotes to get through.
Oh yeah, there are. They prefer to go under 🫤 and I “repair/patch” every spot I find with 2x4 woven wire - dig down and all/apron. I’m pretty quick with the hog rings! 😉 so far ever spot I’ve done has not been re-dug. There are areas that I can’t see/get to because of heavy growth like big sugar sumacs. But I don’t see any game trails coming out of those areas either.
 

Ridgetop

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The fence is the big issue with an LGD. That and having to pen him up when you go out on the graze with the other dogs. The LGD will probably try to eradicate them. It will get used to Murphy having his own side of the property, but your dogs moving freely among the sheep not so much.

Your type of grazing and herding dogs does not go well with LGDs. LGD protection comes from a large dog or several living 24/7 with the sheep in fields. Predators that come around are driven away by the LGDs. If you are in heavy predator country and they are APEX predators you need more dogs up to maybe 10 in wolf territory, 5 in bear territory. With your type of grazing routine, unless you want to leave the sheep out alone to graze and your dogs will not stay with them to protect them, you probably don't need LGDs.

Can you take Obi and Zoe out together if the threat gets worse?
 

SageHill

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The fence is the big issue with an LGD. That and having to pen him up when you go out on the graze with the other dogs. The LGD will probably try to eradicate them. It will get used to Murphy having his own side of the property, but your dogs moving freely among the sheep not so much.

Your type of grazing and herding dogs does not go well with LGDs. LGD protection comes from a large dog or several living 24/7 with the sheep in fields. Predators that come around are driven away by the LGDs. If you are in heavy predator country and they are APEX predators you need more dogs up to maybe 10 in wolf territory, 5 in bear territory. With your type of grazing routine, unless you want to leave the sheep out alone to graze and your dogs will not stay with them to protect them, you probably don't need LGDs.

Can you take Obi and Zoe out together if the threat gets worse?
Yeah - that's exactly what I've been thinking -- my style of grazing coupled with the coming and going of clients for training an LGD would not be the best choice for me. I could end up with a bad situation, or at best frustrating with the management of all the moving pieces I've got going. I'm not jumping for joy with the current situation, but I am managing it with a 'that's life on the ranch' attitude and dealing with what I have. The coyotes are here, though there have been mountain lion sightings not far away. Though none really recent, but then I don't do FB where all that info tends to gather.
Yes, Obi and Zo can work together, though I will not send a dog after the coyotes. At this point they believe their job ,when encounters happen, is to hold the sheep together while I deter the visitor(s).
 

Ridgetop

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Actually, if that works, then it is an appropriate grazing way. After all that is what those big heavy shepherd's crooks were originally for - used as weapons against wild animals and human predators. A well-aimed shepherd's crook can seriously injure a coyote or man. If you don't want to carry a .22 rifle, you might look into a pistol in a holster in case you need something more serious. Ranchers did not carry 6-shooter just for having draw-downs on the bad guys. They carried a side arm in case they had to use it on rattlesnakes, close encounters with a cougar or coyote, emergency of some kind, including shooting an animal that got into trouble and had no other option. A side arm in a holster is much easier to maneuver with than a rifle when walking through rocky pasture.
 

SageHill

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Actually, if that works, then it is an appropriate grazing way. After all that is what those big heavy shepherd's crooks were originally for - used as weapons against wild animals and human predators. A well-aimed shepherd's crook can seriously injure a coyote or man.
HA! All those years of practice, training, testing, teaching - I'm damn good at throwing and using a crook. :D =D :D =D Who'd thunk!! :lol: I've had some really nice ones through the years from Premier, but the very first crook I got I still have and it's really no different than the day I got it - it's probably 5ft tall, has a few "scars" and is <cough>damn close to 40 yrs old. It's made of oak - or so I was told when I got it from my first herding instructor back in IL.
 

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