The weather continues to be warm here in the UK and everyone’s thoughts are turning to shearing – though some have finished already!
If you have someone come to shear for you, which is most people I guess, you will have had them booked for some time now. The date is set but the weather is variable – different every year but sometimes it just comes together as you want it. Let’s hope it does this year.
If we go too early, the weather can change back to being cold and/or wet. Hot sunny days with amazing clear skies, typical of May, can mean the heat also escapes quickly to those clear skies at night and temperatures can drop to near zero. It is not unheard of that we even get the odd frost. If your alpacas have been relieved of their fleece, you can get them forming a queue asking for it back, with their back muscles twitching and rippling in true alpaca-style shivering. Depending on their age and condition, you may have to think about bringing them in at night or even adding a protective coat for the most vulnerable.
It won’t be long though until the weather is more predictable and ‘probably’ safe. Sometime in the next couple of weeks – or so.
It gives a little more time for those final practical preparations.
Shearing also gets a brief mention in the topical tips podcast