Monday, May 15, 2006

Jeremy the Guard Llama

Last summer we "lost" 15 lambs and ewes to coyotes in a matter of three weeks time. Mark is usually pretty patient with the wildlife, knowing that they need to live too and that sometimes some of "our" sheep are "their" food. But last year was too much. We have thought about "guard dogs", but steered clear of them because we aren't always where our sheep are and "what if" the dog did something wrong.

At the Franklin County Fair in September, we met a sheep farmer who swore by his guard llama, and so, because we felt helpless and had to do something, we went in search of a llama. That led us about 4 miles down the road to Julie who was downsizing her herd of llamas. We brought home "Jeremy" and he has been with the sheep ever since. So far, so good - no losses to coyotes. He walks the fenceline and keeps watch over everything. He's not so sure about dogs - which is good. Our two border collies Phoebe and Ness are okay because he knows them - but he is always "on guard."

Thank you Jeremy!


Anonymous said...

Does Jeremy need a friend? Isn't he lonely?


Bob Y said...

Where does Jeremy sleep?
It sounds like he's earning his keep if you haven't lost any lambs to coyotes. Do you shear his wool? along with the sheep?
bob y

Kristin said...

From what I understand, one llama is more effective as a guard animal. So Jeremy is just going to live solo w/ his ovine friends for now.


Daisy said...

we went to an Easter egg party at friends' in Dripping Springs, TX. They had rented a horse for pony rides for the children, but didn't realize how terrified the horse would be of the Llama next door.

As soon as he saw that llama, he freaked out, and we removed the child on his back. We switched to a different pasture, where he couldn't see the llama, and it was ok for awhile, untilt he llama figured out where we were. I had no idea there was such inter-species issues!