Ok, ok......I admit it, I'm getting lazy in my old age. This year's micron data has been scanned and uploaded to this blog because I just plain don't have enough time or energy to type out the information.
For those of you wanting to make informed decisions about sheep I may have for sale next year, here's the meat and potatoes of my flock fleece stats. For conformation and breed type information, request photos when shopping at Ye Ole OK Acres. I currently have nothing for sale except a couple ram lambs and won't have a sales list for a bit yet, but if you want on a waiting list, just let me know. I've only bred 18 ewes this year, so I won't have 42 lambs to choose from again, Thank the Good Lord for that. Last year was insanity.
My personal flock goals (my ideal) for fleece are as follows:
AFD (average fiber diameter) 26 or less
SD (Standard deviation) 5 or less
CV (Coefficient of Variation) 20 or less
CEM (Coarse Edge Mean) 10 or less
SF (Spin Fineness) this needs to be lower than the AFD
CF (Comfort Factor) -My ideal is 90 or more
Keep in mind that this is only the fleece portion of the whole sheepy package. You have to have good breed type, acceptable to outstanding conformation, good mothering ability, parasite resistance (to a point), hardiness, and must be the proper size for a Shetland sheep. So many things make the whole sheep, but since Shetlands are considered the finest of the wool breeds you really have to take a hard look at how good your fleece is and having micron testing done is scientific data that can help to train your eye and hands for fineness. Another "tool" to help us evaluate our fleece.
Just because a fleece is soft or silky does not mean it's fine.......and that's where a lot of us get off track, it feels soft so we assume it's fine and that's not always the case. Fine can be measured and that's why we do the micron testing. It's an unbiased look at our fleece stats, not just how an individuals' hands interpret "fine". Testing removes the human opinion from the equation.
Happy Lambing everyone.......