Trials and Tribulations of a First-Time Shepherd/Full Time Cattleman – Part 1

For the past few weeks we've been sharing articles from folks at the American Solar Grazing Association about the business of using sheep to manage vegetation in solar arrays. It might have some of you cattlemen/women thinking about raising sheep. With that in mind, here's the voice of experience from someone just like you - Brandon Fix of Bell Rule Genetics, a well known registered and commercial beef producer. This is a topic that has been on my mind for quite some time. I wanted to put something together for folks who are considering adding a flock to their cattle herd or maybe even just starting with a new piece of land and trying to decide which route to go. We have had the flock of 87 initial ewe lambs for 15 months now and I’m not going to sugar coat it: the first year was ugly to put it mildly (We will dive into the numbers later.) Yet I was able to learn a lot about what to do and what not to do and thought it might be valuable for someone starting out. I am not sure I need to say it, but clearly I am not an expert and there are many more qualified people to get sheep advice from when it comes to production practices but I wanted to talk a little more about some of the things I thought I had figured out, but didn’t, and also some of the things I learned. In the Beginning Let me start by saying that if I had been told 10 years

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