"It is well to remember that the entire population of the universe, with one trifling exception, is composed of others." A.Holmes

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Goth, The Destoyer

This is Cedar Pond's Goth. He is a 4 horned Jacob sheep. A male sheep is called a ram. Great name ! There is a reason a very tough truck is called the Dodge Ram. There is a reason a football team is called the Rams. There is a reason a battering ram, used to bash down castle gates, is called a battering ram....just observe a ram for awhile and you will know...just own a ram and for sure you will know!

In my first post I mentioned we like to keep nice pens...presentable pens. Well, Goth has his own pen very close to our driveway. If you drive round our turn-around in the driveway you cannot help but see Goth in all his horned majesty , in his abode of destruction. Goth has destroyed every fence, shelter, feeder, and gate within reach of his battering and apparently almost brainless head. What he lacks in brains is more than made up for with horns and sheer ram force.

So far Goth has not shown aggression toward us, though we would never turn our backs on him while in his pen, and we would NEVER EVER trust our ram. We always enter his pen with caution and a wheelbarrow between us. Even docile, hornless rams are very dangerous. I have a friend who had a beautiful and very docile ram that never attacked her, or showed aggression toward her ewes ( girl sheep). However, her ram destroyed every single 100% guaranteed indestructible farm gate on the property. Hence, my friends farm name : Broken Gate Farm.

As you can see from the picture of the beautiful tarp draped fence, Goth is a busy fellow. He wants to see the other sheep, so he bashes and rips. He stands on his back legs and stretches to catch a glimpse of the girls. Sometimes I watch him peer through small holes he has made with his horns....kind of funny to see that big head and rack peering through a small hole. Now all sheep experts and books recommend a 'ram buddy'. Give the ram company, usually a wether ( castrated male) to keep him company. Goth was raised with his even more magnificent brother, Thistle. One day Goth punctured Thistles' lung while they jousted, and Thistle is no more.Goth killed his brother. ( Cain and Able story for another time )

Goth was not even being aggressive when he killed his brother. They were playing. Observe the picture of the tree above. That big ol' cottonwood tree was bashed and rammed til it died. The tree did nothing at all to deserve this abuse, it was just there.Goth bashes it for fun. Every day.Over and over. I did give him some big rubber balls, and he bashes them around and seems to enjoy it.So far the rubber ball are the only things to have endured continued ramming.

Come August,Goth will be able to enter the ewe pen for breeding season. He will be happy and we will evaluate his pen and seek for a way to make it ram proof AND attractive. After all, zoos contain animals far more destructive and dangerous.....there has to be a way. Any suggestions ?

Meanwhile, we are raising up another ram lamb who is showing signs of bigger horns than Goth. The new ram will again be raised with a buddy or maybe TWO buddies. I am seriously considering naming another ram Vandal or Crash !

"As a shepherd cares for his herd in the day when he is among his scattered sheep, so I will care for My sheep and will deliver them from all the places to which they were scattered on a cloudy and gloomy day. " from God , The Shepherd in Ezekiel 34:12


Lanny said...

Great pictures! Good job on the update. Rams. Don't you know it, they are hard on a place and the people. We know no male animal that isn't, well maybe a drake. But every other one that I can think of, well it just goes to show why there should only be one head honcho on the farm, the rest should be altered or in the freezer. Got have at least one but any more than that is highly debatable

KathyB. said...

You're so right ! Roosters and turkeys are terrible that way. There was one day last year as I was finding myself challenged by almost all the male inhabitants of our place, (not including my precious husband )that I briefly wondered if the freezer was big enough for all of them !

I have observed though, their aggression is aimed at anyone and anything they consider a challenge to what they consider theirs. The ram and rooster and turkeys all claim the female of their species and fight off even the poor person trying to feed and care for her flocks. Where as the females of each species actually provide PRACTICAL protection...they are only interested in protecting young..not aggression for aggression sake !

Makes one think of other areas and species this is applicable....but I won't go there today !

Thanks Lanny. KathyB.