Novel way of sheep gathering for Charlie Armstrong

Not a bit of dust rose off the baler or the tedders as we rushed to bale barley straw before the torrential rain arrived.

The forecast was right for once and it has rained and rained. At least we can’t see the steam coming off the bales in this weather and there is absolutely no way any arsonist will be able to set fire to this straw.

Weaning lambs is nearly finished and the only real problems are scald on feet and many different classes of lamb due to a slow tupping period. However, they have all been wormed and turned out on to fresh fogs looking well.

While helping a friend out lift silage, I had to disappear to have a very short meeting with the Sherriff of Duns. He made a sensible decision and let me keep my driving licence. But there is no room for any more points on my licence so my new car is now a diesel Smart car, 90 miles to the gallon, no tax, better than the Kubota for chasing sheep and cattle and no chance of being stopped doing a hundred.

With Dick, my collie, now dead and a replacement proving expensive, I am delaying this decision and using child labour. Daisy, Henry and Angus are far easier to control than any collie – all I have to do is explain where we want the sheep to go and that’s it. No shouting, chasing dogs and very little swearing; turns out that summer holidays were maybe put in place for sheep gathering.

Burning off our potatoes has started a month earlier than usual and this is partly due to us chitting the seed as the planting date was the same.


Livestock Farmer Focus: Charlie Armstrong

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