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Three new lambs

 
Fred Morgan
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We have a flock of 45 sheep and in the last week we have had 3 births. All I can say is that it is a good thing that lambs become sheep, or I could never bear to eat them... 
 
Leah Sattler
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I understand! I can't do the goat kids when they still look like kids. I wait till they start to look like big ugly wethers and start to eat all my expensive hay.....then they look really tasty 

at what age is considered best to butcher lambs/sheep? I have only had lamb a few times, it is rarely available in stores here. so I haven't really had an opportunity to experiment and see if I like it.
 
Brenda Groth
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aw, enjoy them while they are bitty
 
Jami McBride
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Baby critters get me every time ~ I love babies!

I purchased my 'freezer' lamb just before it was a year old.  The taste is strong compared to beef.  You have to be careful to eliminate the fat before cooking or you get a really strong flavor.  So all in all it takes some getting used to.

I would like to try goat, never had any of that.
 
Kathleen Sanderson
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The flavor in lamb or mutton is stronger in some breeds than others.  Generally, the finer the wool (the more Merino blood) the stronger the flavor.  Coarse-wooled sheep have a milder flavor, and I've been told (haven't had the chance to try any yet) that Icelandic meat is really good. 

Goat meat is better than sheep meat, though, IMO!

Kathleen
 
Fred Morgan
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Location: Northern Zone, Costa Rica - 200 to 300 meters Tropical Humid Rainforest
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Interesting, all we have is meat sheep, and they taste really good, even the big ones.

Just added 500 catfish to the pond and 200 langostinos (think fresh water lobster, a 1 pound tall is possible)

Waste from slaughtering sheep goes to the pond to feed the critters there, waste from the pond is chopped up and either sent to the garden, chickens or back into the pond. We have nearly an acre of spring fed ponds with a minumum flow of 6 inches year round, but during the rainy season (8 months of the year) it is closer to 12+.

So far, the sheep we eat are the ones that don't play nice with the trees. Usually this is aggressive males, that we ended up with when purchasing groups of sheep. 

We sell extra meet to our workers for about a dollar a pound, which is better than beef in the grocery store. With 50 workers, we have a ready market!
 
Leah Sattler
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taste wise I can't tell a difference between goat and beef......texture is a little different, probably because it is so lean. for me the goat is definitely a "moist and slow" cook item. still need beef if we want a steak on the grill.

so where do most hair sheep fall in the strong flavor scale? we would like some sheep ....mostly for mowers and fun.......and have decided on hair sheep for sure.......I am sure sooner or later we will have one that needs to go to freezer camp.
 
Fred Morgan
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Leah Sattler wrote:
taste wise I can't tell a difference between goat and beef......texture is a little different, probably because it is so lean. for me the goat is definitely a "moist and slow" cook item. still need beef if we want a steak on the grill.

so where do most hair sheep fall in the strong flavor scale? we would like some sheep ....mostly for mowers and fun.......and have decided on hair sheep for sure.......I am sure sooner or later we will have one that needs to go to freezer camp.


We have only hair sheep, they taste like very good beef. They tend to be fatter than the cows here since the sheep survive just fine on grass and broad leaf plants, at least here.

Oh, and we have 4 lambs now. 
 
Jami McBride
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crtreedude where do you hale from?  And ehat is your breed of sheep?

Just added 500 catfish to the pond and 200 langostinos (think fresh water lobster, a 1 pound tall is possible)


Wow, those sound wonderful....
 
Fred Morgan
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Jami McBride wrote:
crtreedude where do you hale from?  And ehat is your breed of sheep?

Wow, those sound wonderful....


Originally, I was born in Missouri, but grew up in the Northeast. We have been living in Costa Rica for 5+ years, business for more than seven.

No idea the breed. Whatever is available, we have white, black and a mix, mostly a large white. (up to 50 kilos)

I will try to get some photos and see if anyone can guess.

We got 25 wheelbarrows of sheep droppings mixed with sawdust from the sheep fold today, which is about normal. We change it out every week. This all gets dumped on the garden and used in our nursery as well.

 
Leah Sattler
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crtreedude wrote:
Originally, I was born in Missouri, but grew up in the Northeast. We have been living in Costa Rica for 5+ years, business for more than seven.

No idea the breed. Whatever is available, we have white, black and a mix, mostly a large white. (up to 50 kilos)

I will try to get some photos and see if anyone can guess.

We got 25 wheelbarrows of sheep droppings mixed with sawdust from the sheep fold today, which is about normal. We change it out every week. This all gets dumped on the garden and used in our nursery as well.




I bet you have an awesome garden!

does the meat from sheep marble more like beef?
 
Fred Morgan
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I have to admit to not knowing. We have people who butcher and cook for us. I haven't noticed any marbling though.

Yeah, our garden is pretty amazing. We have a full time worker who is in charge of it with 16 years experience organic farming in Costa Rica, he is a Costa Rican. Organic farming is actually pretty big here.

It is really amazing how fast things will grow in the tropics, the biggest issue I have found is that you have to pretty much double your estimates on how much organic to put in the ground, but then again, it is possible things grow nearly twice as fast.
 
Jennifer Smith
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crtreedude,

I could not help but notice the equine on your logo...  care to share?

I am in southern MO, and came this close to being in CR instead... nice web site you have, I have been visiting it on and off all morning.  Happy to meet you here on this for forum.
 
Fred Morgan
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Jennifer Hall wrote:
crtreedude,

I could not help but notice the equine on your logo...  care to share?

I am in southern MO, and came this close to being in CR instead... nice web site you have, I have been visiting it on and off all morning.  Happy to meet you here on this for forum.


The woman on the logo is my wife, her middle name is Leola, hence Finca (farm) Leola. Literally, Amy's Farm. We do have a lot of horses, I think around 14, but I guess across nearly 800 acres in 4 locations, that isn't that many. They work for a living, hauling seedlings for planting, and caretakers' kids to school. They also end up in town with the caretakers as well.

I was born in Southwest MO, around Joplin (Diamond if you want to be more exact) but grew up in the North East.

Thanks on the compliments on the website - if you go to the blog and the stories, it might be a while before you get finished.

And thanks for the welcome.
 
Jennifer Smith
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Still looking thru photos, GREAT...
were so close to buying down there but we bought this place instead.  Now I can see what I missed out on.

 
Fred Morgan
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Jennifer Hall wrote:
Still looking thru photos, GREAT...
were so close to buying down there but we bought this place instead.  Now I can see what I missed out on.




Living down here is interesting to say the least. We have done well, but many do not. You have to want to live in a third world nation. Of course those trying to sell properties try to imply that this is the same as the USA, it is far from it. Somethings better, some worse.

But, for growing things year round, it is paradise. 
 
Fred Morgan
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The actual count of sheep is 46, including all the younguns. Just found out someone wants to sell 10 more, one ram, 9 ewes, seven are VERY pregnant.

About 431 dollars for 10. I was curious how much you all pay for sheep up there?

The lambs are very frisky, and 3 of the 4 are ewes, which is very good for future growth of the folk. I need about 100 for this plantation.
 
Jennifer Smith
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The stoies are even better than the photos ... well the photos enhance the stories...some funny stuff
 
Fred Morgan
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Jennifer Hall wrote:
The stoies are even better than the photos ... well the photos enhance the stories...some funny stuff


It has been a long strange trip for sure. 
 
Fred Morgan
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We now have 6 lambs prancing around. Had a double yesterday, our first double. Generally speaking, when we purchase sheep, it is from people who didn't know how to care for them. Therefore, the ewes weren't given enough minerals and food to produce doubles.

Nice to see a double though.

We also just added 12 ewes, which with the lambs brings us up to 60.

A semi-wild dog did try to attack a lamb, the mother got in the way, which gave the shepherd time to get there. The dog decided a man with a machete is a bit more of a threat than a ewe.

They now have a sling shot, and soon are going to have a BB gun. It isn't that I am against killing a wild dog or coyote, I just don't want to have to round up the sheep after they are scattered to the four corners of the world from the sound of a gun!
 
Jennifer Smith
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As you have mules I am surprised you don't run a donkey out to kill/run off canines.
 
Fred Morgan
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Jennifer Hall wrote:
As you have mules I am surprised you don't run a donkey out to kill/run off canines.


Thinking about it. We once had a mule, but no longer. Donkeys are very hard to come by. I could always put a stallion out there, they HATE dogs.
 
Jennifer Smith
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In my head anytime I see a herd of sheep I see a small donkey or two...sheep would only be an excuse to get me a mini donkey.  I have been hooked ever since I was asked to judge one of their shows. 

Fred, donkeys are common here and we even have one in Alabama... should we find you some?  How would it be to import an equine? 
 
Fred Morgan
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Jennifer Hall wrote:
In my head anytime I see a herd of sheep I see a small donkey or two...sheep would only be an excuse to get me a mini donkey.  I have been hooked ever since I was asked to judge one of their shows. 

Fred, donkeys are common here and we even have one in Alabama... should we find you some?  How would it be to import an equine? 


Importing would be expensive most likely. Donkeys are pretty common in Nicaragua, I need to make a trip to buy a few. Pretty easy to get them across the boarder too.

But the sheep have shepherds with them all the time, so it really isn't that big of a concern.
 
Jennifer Smith
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crtreedude wrote:
Importing would be expensive most likely. Donkeys are pretty common in Nicaragua, I need to make a trip to buy a few. Pretty easy to get them across the boarder too.

But the sheep have shepherds with them all the time, so it really isn't that big of a concern.

Last we went down it was not hard to get horses to mexico, but it is one of the things we considered when we thought of moving down there.  I have become a horse snob and would have wanted to bring my own horses with me.

Donkeys work cheap... and a fun to look at.
 
Fred Morgan
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Jennifer Hall wrote:
Last we went down it was not hard to get horses to mexico, but it is one of the things we considered when we thought of moving down there.  I have become a horse snob and would have wanted to bring my own horses with me.

Donkeys work cheap... and a fun to look at.


Interesting, it is very expensive to get a very high quality horse down here to buy. I understand up there, people have horses they are trying to offload having found out the hard way that they can be a lot of work and expense.

Perhaps I can start a new line... "you may not be able to retire in paradise, but your horse can..."
 
Jennifer Smith
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crtreedude wrote:
"you may not be able to retire in paradise, but your horse can..."

I like it
 
Fred Morgan
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Just a quick update on the sheep, as of this morning, there are 79. Nothing like year round breeding for sure! I have another 10 that may be coming in as well.

The sheep mainly are katahdins from my research. In every group, there seems to be one or so that just won't prosper, so we kill it and feed it to the catfish.

The experiment continues very well - and I love mutton!
 
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