Author Archive for: admin

Spring Sheep Workshop

08 May
May 8, 2013

Join us at the George Warrant farm near Kassota, MN on May 18 for the Spring Sheep workshop. Grazing and pasture management will be the main focus of the tour. Please pre-register to help with meal planning.

Alfalfa winterkill
An unusual amount of winter injury and winterkill of alfalfa stands occurred in south central and southern Minnesota. While reports do not represent a detailed analysis of where injury to alfalfa occurred across Minnesota, they suggest a need for producers to check on stands and evaluate them for potential winter injury. (from the University of MN Extension Ag News Wire)

Spring is here (at least in theory)

05 Apr
April 5, 2013
Please check out the Events page to see the Spring Sheep Workshop information!

Last year we were at 80 degrees, this year I still have piles of snow in the yard (and baby chicks in my basement instead of out in the barn where they belong). Still waiting on the last ewe to lamb…I think she’s waiting until I board the plane for DC next week.

Thanks to George Warrant for hosting the Spring Sheep Workshop at his farm near Kassota, coming up on May 18. Registration information will be posted on-line and will be included in the next newsletter. Thanks to John Dvorak for leading the planning efforts for this event.

Thank you to everyone who contacted your state legislators regarding the efforts to place a moratorium on the wolf hunting/trapping season. Your voices made a difference (we should also thank MN Farm Bureau for making us aware that this was being proposed).

And finally, thanks to our web guru Sarah for helping me fix a mistake that I made which caused a temporary interruption in our website service. We have also updated the Events Calendar for 2013. Here’s to a wet spring which will hopefully lead to bountiful hay and corn crops!

We’re Back!

03 Apr
April 3, 2013

Due to an issue with our web hosting services, we’ve been missing in action for a couple of weeks. However, we are pleased to say all issues have been resolved and we are back online! We apologize for any inconvenience. Events for this year will be added on the Events page soon, so please be on the look-out for updates.

Happy New Year from MLWPA!

08 Jan
January 8, 2013

Fortunately the Mayans were wrong and we are still here tending to our sheep. My 2013 lambing season began a week early. The ewe developed pregnancy toxemia, went down and consumed little feed. Her water bag was out 7 days before her due date, and in her weakened state I had to pull both lambs. Despite my best efforts, it didn’t turn out well. Some of my more positive shepherding friends have pointed out that since these lambs were technically born in 2012, I should proclaim that the 2012 lambing season ended poorly, and look for the 2013 lambing seasonĀ to begin successfully when my next ewe lambs (due Jan. 14).

In the spirit of positivity (especially now that Congress has “saved us from the fiscal cliff”[insert sarcastic tone here]), I will look forward to better lamb prices for 2013, and strong demand for quality breeding stock. Perhaps more importantly to all of our bottom lines is a good crop year to take some pressure off of feed prices. I don’t know about you, but it seems like the more expensive hay gets, the more of it my sheep eat…

Wishing all of you the best of luck in the upcoming lambing season. (As always, the MLWPA board welcomes and encourages your input on how we can better serve MN’s sheep industry.)

Shepherd’s Holiday Wrap-up

05 Dec
December 5, 2012

The Shepherd’s Holiday was grand event highlighted by the selection of Dan Persons, of KensingtonĀ as this year’s Silver Bell award winner. Although relatively new to sheep farming, Dan has excelled in the production and promotion of sheep, and has been a dedicated leader for the association. The use of technology, labor-saving managment techniques and a focus on production records helps Rafter P Ranch care for over 1,000 ewes and provide a year-round supply of lambs. Congratulations Dan!

John Dvorak, of Webster was elected President of MLWPA at the annual business meeting. The MLWPA board also welcomes newly-elected Travis Fowler of Truman. Travis and his wife Jeanine have been coordinating the trade show and auction, and did a super job again this year.

The Make It With Wool contest featured 40 contestants. The MIWW fashion show was an incredible display of talent and creativity. Congratulations to our winners, we know you will represent MN well at the national competition. (watch for photos at a later date)

If you weren’t there, you missed out on some great seminars, fun social activities with fellow sheep enthusiasts, and a delicious leg-of-lamb banquet. Join us next year as we move the Shepherd’s Holiday to a soon-to-be-determined northern MN location.