Yesterday was the yearly Federal Flock inspection. We are in the Scrapie Flock Certification program and are certified scrapie free. One of the things we have to do is have our flock inspected once a year. The inspector comes out and we run every single sheep through and he checks the ear tag numbers against the inventory. I also provide data on every single sheep that was born or on the place at any time during the last year. This year we also had to give shots so as they went through we gave them their yearly vaccination. We use Covexin 8 vaccine as we have all the clostridial diseases in our area and it protects the lambs to come. Some bobbles, we used the shearing sweep and sheep did not want to go in but we got them all done. Ken sprained his ankle and I fell over a root trying to move sheep from one pen to another but am ok.

Once we had checked every sheep and verified the federal ear tag we went inside to do paperwork. I had the lists of all the sheep that had been on the place last year. I provided the documentation of whether they were sold, butchered, died or stillborn. For any that were sold I have to provide the addresses of who they were sold to. Butcher animals have to have the age at slaughter listed and the sheep that died have to have documentation of what caused the death. Dates of all the events are also required. Our final numbers for 2007 80 sheep butchered, 32 sold, 3 died and 5 stillborns. For 2008 so far we have butchered 4 more sheep. We have 120 sheep alive on this date. There are a few questions to answer, no sheep have had nose to nose contact with our sheep in the last year, we have not grazed them on any other property, any show sheep have been isolated from nose to nose contact while at the show and so on.

Most of this record keeping is also required for all sheep and goat breeders in the US. But people not in the certification program do not have to tag all sheep until sold whereas I have to tag everything over 12 months of age with an approved tamper evident tag with our flock ID and an individual number.

We finished our paperwork and called it good for the day.

Next job is try to figure out how to get the toes trimmed on the ewes before they go on pasture and do their wormer. But with Ken injured I’m not sure how to do it as he usually holds the sheep while I trim toes.