Saturday, 17 January 2015

We hate to boast...

...but we couldn't resist:

We keep Ripollesa sheep, so we are members of the breeders association, ANCRI. As part of their improvement programme we keep records of lamb births, weights and ages. ANCRI compile all of this data - from 48 farms around Catalonia - so that each of us gets a picture of how well, or not, we are doing.

The 2013 data has just arrived...and the Croft is the most productive Ripollesa farm in Catalona. Yes! Un-B-Leavable!

The numbers: Our "Numerical Productivity" (the numbers of lambs that went to slaughter, divided by the number of ewes) was 1.8 in 2013. The average across the 48 member farms was 1.03.

And of course this is where the boasting ends. We are managing our tiny flock differently from other farms. We don't keep lambs to grow up as ewes - because we have just one male (Phoenix), so if we kept the lambs he would be mating with his own daughters (er, not good.) So all our lambs went to slaughter, boosting our "Numerical Productivity." And the fact that ours is the smallest flock in the data set also makes a difference.

But we are also the top in one other score, which is more relevant: our lambs are the heaviest births in the national Ripollesa flock.  Average birth weight here at the Croft in 2013 was 4.8kg, against the national average of 3.5kg.

All of this is no credit to us, because we are rank amateurs compared with the other Ripollesa shepherds. But it is credit to Pep Martinez, our wonderful vet, who has been able to transmit to us innocents a load of sheep-care knowledge. Thanks Pep!


El Blog de El Cargol del Montseny said...

Enhorabona, el respecte i l'amor als teus xais t'han dut al èxit. Felicitats de nou.

pipsprof said...

Boast,boast! You deserve it with the amount of time, effort and love you afford your animals.
Has de presumir! T'ho mereixes amb la quantitat de temps, esforç i amor que dones als animals! Petons de Tolosa i bon any nou a Can Parròquia!