We have 280 sheep during the winter months. In summer they triple that number when the lambs are with us. All our sheep are polled, except one which has four horns. All our sheep have names and number for bookkeeping.
Our goal is to have sheep that give good and healthy lambs, but also that they are calm,- without being pushy, good mothers, healthy, milk enough for their lambs, and their wool are of good quality in pure colors. As many as the sheep are their personality differs between them. Some of them becoming more favorites than some of the others.
The ram Dregill is one of those spoiled ones. He has now passed away. But when he was alive he loved to be cuddled, scratched and talked to. Not worse if he could get a handful of barley now and then. But never did he put his head in us to ask for more patting, always kind and gentle. His daughters are many the same way.
Bríet belongs to my older daughter. She is named after a pioneer in the battle for women's rights in the old days; Bríet Bjarnhéðinsdóttir.
She is like the woman she is named after, strongminded, wise and doesn‘t follow the customary footsteps of others. She is not very old, but has had many lambs and takes good care of them. She is not the cuddly kind, but whenever she needs to be handled with, she puts her trust on the shepherd. My older daughter likes to name her sheep with big names, and for example, she has Kleopatra, Queen, and Afroditis; in Icelandic, that is Kleópatra, Drottning, and Afródíta.
These ladies are 6 months old when the picture is taken. The one on the left was very wild. When she felt threatened, she jumped up on the other sheep backs and ran on top of them. Sadly she only lived for one year. Her name was Hnáta (little girl). The grey one at the right had two pelt lambs her first year and they came curly and beautiful from the mountain. Her name is Gná. The one in the middle is the Queen. A pretty picture of her was put on a post-card and funny enough she got to be a great representative of our farm and company. She is all we want in a sheep. Calm, good mother, milks a lot and takes good care of her offspring. In the barn, she has this dignity about her that makes you admire her personality. Her name is Snerpa. Snerpa belongs to my younger daughter who seems to have had many sheep with great characters.
When I and my husband took over the farm in 2010, there was one sheep with two beautiful daughters that I decided to keep on for further breeding. This sheep had the number 7002, born in 2007. She did not have a name, nor did any other sheep. I think every sheep needs to have a name so I sat down and found a name for all of them - then being 56 in total. Since this sheep had such beautiful daughters I thought she deserved the name Framtíð which means Future. Her daughters I named Sól (Sun) and Fiðla (Fiddle). This sheep was actually magnificent. She always had two or three big lambs, and every year I kept one or more of them for further breeding. One of her sons had another son that got an award last fall for being a good father. Her daughters are also very good and for example, has Sól now 8 daughters alive and is still alive herself, becoming 8 years old and pregnant with three lambs. Today most of our sheep are one way or another related to Framtíð.
I never got to take a picture of Framtíð, so when she died I decided to paint a picture of her on the barn‘s wall. Both for memory and to remind the other sheep of their ancestor and how a good sheep is supposed to be. No pressure.
One of my favorite sheep is Efasemd (Doubt). Her name was chosen because I wasn't sure if she would be good for breeding being a daughter of a not so good sheep.
But boy did she turn out good.
She is a very good mother and never has had difficulties when giving birth.
Has healthy lambs every year.
And her character is so amazing.
Here she is asking for some better hay and gets a cuddle instead - of course.