We are dairy farmers by profession but slowly our sheep numbers are taking over our farm. Mom, Chris Davenport, and myself, Amy Davenport, run the sheep operation with help from my sister Jenny.
My mother started out with a few sheep to work our Australian Shepherd dogs. When I was twelve, I joined the Wonderful Woolies sheep 4-H Club. I have been a member for 8 years. We had a few Columbia crosses and liked them. That was when we started looking for purebred Columbias. Our Columbia flock started with Honey, Sweetie, Pie, and Pretty Boy. Our Columbia flock has now expanded to having twelve brood ewes.
We then moved into having Tunis sheep when a friend gave us two bred ewes that her daughter had used for 4-H. Our Tunis flock has expanded to having more Tunis sheep than Columbia sheep.
We have had several Columbia/Oxford cross sheep and liked them but they could not be shown by us except in wool classes. My sister liked the Oxfords and wanted a breed of her own so we bought one ewe two years ago and now like the Oxfords so much that we have six brood ewes.
Because the bigger breeds require more feed we also have been trying to develop sheep that are low maintenance, grow well on grass and little grain and think we have several that fit that bill. We took a Columbia/Barbados and bred her to a Tunis and now have several of that cross who grow well on their mothers with little assistance on our part and then grow well on pasture.
My mom and I enjoy our sheep very much and feel joy when we see the sheep do their little bounces. It makes us feel like we are doing things right.
Any questions or comments contact us at Otterknoll Farm: