Each year, around the end of May, the sheep on the farm are shorn. Andy Rice, the incredible sheep shearer, comes to the island to shear all of the sheep on the Vineyard. It takes the entire day and many hands to shear our flock.
This year, our bottle-fed lamb Dandelion, kept an eye on the process.
Nathaniel brings the flock down to the barn in the days leading up to shearing. If there is rain in the forecast, the sheep must be kept indoors – there is no shearing wet sheep!
Nathaniel and Mitchell are in charge of the feet, worming the sheep, and guiding them to Andy. Once the sheep is shorn, one of us picks up the fleece carefully, and in one piece, and we fling it over the wheel. A few of us pick through the fleece, removing any foul parts. Then we climb up the wool bag and throw the fleece in. Every few sheep one of us climbs into the bag and, just like Lucy and the wine grapes, stomps on the wool to pack it down.