James Read takes time off to get dogs ready for trial

We are clipped and wormed up and the Scotch half bred shearlings look enormous which is a good thing as Malton shearling sales are only a month away now. You don’t actually realise how big they are until you clip them by the side of a mule.

Grass growth is tremendous with our high rainfall at the minute and I have shut another field up for haylage.

With those jobs done it has given me a bit of time with the dogs. Jim has been sold and gone to a big sheep unit with a lovely farming family. Tom, my fourteen month old dog (sire Aled Owens Mac) is coming on really well; he has a lovely calming way with his sheep, although sheep never look twice at him and move away. I will hopefully have him ready for the winter nursery trials.

Jess my old bitch has had a recent win at a trial. I hope she hasn’t peaked her performance too soon with the nationals looming. Jess is a bit like the other lady in my life, fantastic one minute and moody the next.

When you ride around the wheat fields of Lincolnshire you would not think a field has been sprayed, blackgrass is rife. If you worm a sheep or fly spray it nine times out of ten it works, but not with an arable field, and you get a bill well into the thousands. So please Mr Chemical Company can we all have our money back?

James Read farms at Louth on the edge of the Lincolnshire Wolds in partnership with his father. They farm 400ha of mainly arable land and are the main contractors on 700ha. He runs 200 breeding sheep and a pack of working/trialling sheepdogs.

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