Wool Pellets for Gardening – Marketing Raw Wool

Wool Pellets (patent pending) are a brand new way to grow healthy, happy, all natural plants.  As our newest and most innovative product, Wool Pellets are made from 100 % American raw wool and provide fertilizer, porosity, and water wise holding ability to your plants.  Wool is sheared from our sheep and other  ranchers’ sheep each spring some of this wool is sold to make clothes.  However belly wool and wool from around the back end of the sheep(called “tags”) is what we use to make Wooley Water Wise Wool Pellets.  Wool Pellets have a fertilizer value of 9-1-2 NPK, plus they have Calcium, Magnesium,Iron, Sulfur, and other Micro nutrients in just the right amounts.
​Wild Valley Farms has partnered with Pineae Greenhouses to create the Wooley Water Wise hanging baskets which will be available through Costco spring of 2016.

​Wool Pellets are more than a fertilizer because:

  • Ability to hold 20 times their weight in water helping to reduce the times you water.
  • By holding water they can wick away extra water protecting your plants from over watering.
  • Wool pellets also expand when added to the soil helping to increase porosity for optimal root growth.  Reducing the need for additives like Perlite.
  • Wool Pellets are slow release helping your plants grow all year long.
  • Wool Pellets are All Natural, Organic, Sustainable, and Renewable.  They are made from 100% raw wool from U.S.  ranchers.
  • Wool Pellets improve your soil!
  • Wool Pellets also repeal slugs and snails.

Source: http://www.wildvalleyfarms.com/wool-pellets.html

Sheep Shearing Training

90 Minute DVD from Doug Rathke, NZ trained USA shearing instructor since 1988 ($45).

Sheep Shearing Video

Strong demand has prompted Doug Rathke to put together an instructional sheep shearing called “Sheep Shearing Made Easy”.  This video is designed both for the beginner and for those who have already been shearing and are interested in improving their shearing technique to increase speed and efficiency of the job and to minimize stress to the animal.

This 90 minute “how-to” video takes the viewer step by step through the basics of shearing including preparing for shearing, shearing clothing, fitness, understanding and appreciation of shearing gear, selecting combs and cutters, setting up a hand piece, and setting the shearing work area.

The core of the video is dedicated to shearing patterns and techniques.  Not only does the video patiently show the basic shearing pattern and footwork, it also explains the modifications of the shearing pattern for different types of sheep. Each shearing blow is explained as Rathke demonstrates the procedure. Tips are also given on how to hold the hand piece for maximum blow width, thereby avoiding extra work and costly second cuts.

Order DVD now.

Also holds sheep shearing schools, located in Hutchinson Minnesota – check his web site for schedule.


Update on a Geep – Hybrid Sheep Goat Born March 2014

The return of the geep: two years on.  By Amy McShane on 29 January 2016

The geep is now two years old.

It’s been almost two years on from the birth of the sheep-goat hybrid.

A farm in Kildare is home to the geep, who was born in March 2014. Owner of the farm Paddy Murphy said at the time that “it had all the hallmarks of a goat. He looks like a goat trapped in a lamb’s body.”

Full Story and videos:   http://www.farmersjournal.ie/the-return-of-the-geep-two-years-on-199305

County Tyrone sheep at Shannon farm gives birth to rare sextuplet lambs

County Tyrone sheep at Shannon farm gives birth to rare sextuplet lambs

Shannon family with lambs

A sheep at a family-run farm in County Tyrone has surprised its owners by giving birth to rare sextuplets.

In fortuitous timing, the six healthy lambs were born at the Donemana farm at 06:00 GMT on Good Friday 27 March.

Owner Witherow Shannon said it was the first time he had ever seen six lambs born to the same ewe.

Romney lambs

“I’ve been in sheep now for sixty years, I’ve never seen it and anyone I’ve been speaking to has never seen it,” Mr Shannon said

The President of the British sheep veterinary association, Tim Bebbington, said it was very unusual.

In his 26 years as a sheep vet, Mr Bebbington told the BBC that the most lambs he has ever seen from one ewe, is five.

Full Story: http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-northern-ireland-foyle-west-35941274

Evaluation of chemical castration with calcium chloride versus surgical castration in donkeys: testosterone as an endpoint marker



For the last few years, researchers have been interested in developing a method for chemical sterilization which may be a better alternative to surgical castration. An ideal chemical sterilant would be one that effectively arrests spermatogenesis and androgenesis as well as libido with absence of toxic or other side effects. Calcium chloride in various solutions and concentrations has been tested in many animal species, but few studies have been evaluated it in equines as a chemical sterilant. So, the objective of this study was to evaluate the clinical efficacy of chemical castration with 20 % calcium chloride dissolved in absolute ethanol in comparison with surgical castration in donkeys based on the changes in the serum testosterone level and the histopathological changes in treated testes.


Twelve clinically healthy adult male donkeys were used in this study. Donkeys were divided randomly and equally into two groups: a surgical (S) group (n = 6) and a chemical (C) group (n  = 6). Animals in the (S) group were subjected to surgical castration while those in the (C) group received a single bilateral intratesticular injection of 20 % calcium chloride dissolved in absolute ethanol (20 ml/testis). Animals were kept under clinical observation for 60 days. Changes in animals’ behavior and gross changes in external genitalia were monitored daily. Serum concentrations of testosterone were measured prior to treatment and at 15, 30, 45 and 60 days post-treatment. Testicles in the (C) group were examined histopathologically at the end of the experiment.


Chemical castration with intratesticular calcium chloride vs. surgical castration failed to reduce serum concentrations of testosterone throughout the whole duration of the study; however it induced orchitis that was evident by focal necrotic areas in seminiferous tubules, cellular infiltration of neutrophils, proliferative intertubular fibrosis with a compensatory proliferation of Leydig cells. Donkeys tolerated the intratesticular injection of calcium chloride. There were no detectable changes in the general health status of the animals with the exception of swelling in external genitalia, scrotal ulcerations and fistulas. Food and water consumption and the gait of animals remained unaffected.


Intratesticular calcium chloride can’t be considered an effective method for chemical castration in donkeys.

Source:  BMC Veterinary Research, 2016, 12:46 
BMC series – open, inclusive and trusted

DOI: 10.1186/s12917-016-0670-3
©  Ibrahim et al. 2016
Authors:  Ahmed Ibrahim Email author, Magda M. Ali, Nasser S. Abou-Khalil and  Marwa F. Ali

Received: 7 September 2015
Accepted: 2 March 2016
Published: 8 March 2016

Full article on BioMed Central (Open Access Publisher).

Abstract only provided above as allowed by Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://​creativecommons.​org/​licenses/​by/​4.​0/​).