Our foundation flock came from Duron Howard in Oklahoma. The Howards are one of the most respected and well-known families in the Southdown breed.
Since our starter flock was small, we have a very special relationship with these ewes and consider them members of our family. They have served us well and have been outstanding mothers. When they can no longer breed, they will have a home here for life if I cannot find good pet homes for them to retire to.
Our first year, we purchased mature, bred ewes. This is a path I highly recommend for anyone just starting out. The girls knew more than I did about lambing, and they did a fantastic job delivering and bonding with their babies. All but one ewe delivered multiples, and we had no bottle babies. They certainly lived up to the Southdown’s reputation for being excellent mothers. Their daughters all had twins their first year, which was a little scary but they had no trouble learning how to count to two! They act like old hands at the lambing business.
When people visit our farm they always comment about how the sheep pens look like a fortress. Mr. Howard impressed upon me the importance of protection from predators, and my husband is an electrical engineer, so he kind of went overboard with the electric fencing. Plus we have the donkey. Other than being a little too protective — over the hay feeder — she’s no trouble at all and she has kept the neighborhood bobcat from traveling through our land.