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February 26th, 2017 at 12:54 pm

I'm sitting here sipping my morning tea. Neighbor is coming over in less than hour to discuss having his sheep graze on my property.

He would need to put up some wire fencing. I would welcome having the sheep graze to hopefully get rid of a lot of overgrowth and brambles that makes for attractive deer habitat. Just yesterday there were 4 deer munching my rhododendrons during daylight hours.

My neighbor has 7 acres, but much of it is wooded and while he has cleared some, he still has a shortage of pasture.

The sheep (about 10 in all) would be rotated to avoid overgrazing (he also has a mobile chicken house), as the property we're talking about is actually a fairly steep slope. My only concern would be possible erosion issues if all the vegetation was mowed down close that could degrade that slope and cause more water coming down the hill. The neighbor did, at his own expense, install some drainage pipes to divert water coming into my yard when he paved his driveway a few years ago. So he's been a pretty good neighbor, and I'd like to try out this arrangement and see how it goes. I'm just not familiar with how closely sheep will eat vegetation, or even what they'll eat or not eat. He said he wants to plant some ground covers for them to eat.

These are hairless sheep which don't require sheering. He said there's no money in the wool and that's why he got this variety.

I think it would be quite lovely to see sheep peacefully grazing in my backyard. Smile

In return for this favor, and for my writing up the statement of mission document to form his nonprofit foundation, which by the way he sent to the governor), I had asked him to take down a tree but it appears he's not comfortable doing that, which I understand.

He may be bringing his tree guy this morning, who does take down trees. I'm now thinking of just asking them to do some pruning of fairly large limbs of an apple tree that were brought down in a storm a couple years ago but are still hanging on the tree.

He had offered to give me lamb meat in exchange for letting them graze here, but I am really trying to be vegan and already my sister has started giving me eggs from her chickens, which I haven't been able to pass up. We have not spoken since my mother's funeral except for once or twice saying hello when I was picking my dad up. So while I do love lamb, I don't think I'd want to cook it. My dad and sister would probably love fresh lamb though. Maybe I could ask for some for him. Smile

I brought my dad up there yesterday so he could meet my neighbor and to show him the neighbor's animals in the barn, which includes cows and chickens as well as the sheep. One of his sheep is due to have a baby any day now. His sheep seemed a little skittish. One of them was stomping its foot on the ground when i reached toward it; I think it was nervous.

Dad needed birdseed so I took him to Agway and then we had Chinese for lunch. He also needs new shoes so Monday I'll take him to a shoe store....maybe DSW?

I see Great Clips is having an $8 haircut sale; maybe I can squeeze that in today.

3 Responses to “Baaa.....”

  1. rob62521 Says:

    That's interesting about the possible sheep grazing. It does sound like this person is a good neighbor. Maybe you and he can work out something else if you don't want lamb meat.

  2. PatientSaver Says:

    Actually, there are certain "issues" we'll need to work out, and they are making me a little nervous.

    For one thing, if I did decide to sell my house at some point, he would need to remove the fence. That's not really a biggie, I don't think, and I don't have any plans to sell now.

    The one thing I started worrying about after we spoke is that he wants to take a bunch of trees down on the slope between us. Probably 3/4 of the slope is his and the lower 1/4 slope is mine, so I legally really couldn't tell him not to cut trees on his own property, but my concern is the slope. He's also got to use his backhoe to clear out all the brush for the sheep and plant stuff they'll eat.

    I told him I don't want to lose my sense of privacy becus right not it's all woodsy and a good buffer between us. If i look up there, all i see is the back of his barn, but if he takes down too much, I could see cars parked in his driveway and so on.

    Plus, I don't want the hillside degraded to the point where i have erosion problems and the hill starts washing away in heavy storms!

    He will need to fence a trio of nice evergreens i have, and the trunk of a gorgeous red maple, becus apparently sheep eat bark off trees. Not sure if they'd eat evergreens but if they did, they would disfigure the lower part of the needles wouldn't grow back.

    I called him back after we talked when I started thinking of these things, but he didn't sound like he wanted to talk right then and he just said, we'll figure it out.

    The "fence" is just some posts and a couple of electric wires.

    I'm not really getting anything out of it except that I'm trying to be a good neighbor who have been very nice to me since they moved in. Plus I'll be getting the "back 40" of my property cleared of deer habitat; they will still be able to access my yard but it won't be quite as inviting.

  3. PatientSaver Says:

    Plus, he more than once asked if the sheep would bother me when they baaaa. I said no, becus i often hear them now, but i'm wondering if constant baaing could become annoying becus they were that much closer to my house. The fence line closest to my house is I guess about 50 feet back from the house.

    I regret a little so quickly endorsing the idea without having fully thought it out. But part of why that happened is becus he didn't immediately tell me he would need to clear the land with his backhoe, or that he wants to take down a bunch of trees.

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