By Ron Parker
“The Sheep Book offers a template for both the beginner and the old hand. Mixing theoretical, technical and practical, Parker offers a buffet of tips for any sheep producer.”
Joel Salatin, author of You Can Farm
“Ron combines intelligent observations with a shrewd and delightful humor, and his practical experience shows through at every turn. Unlike so many textbooks, Ron's book is structured around the gentle cycle of a ewe's production year, which is elegantly logical and effective. Beginner and veteran shepherds alike will appreciate the many how-to-do-it descriptions in these chapters. The reading is always interesting, always clear, and this book would be an asset in any shepherd's library.”
Woody Lane, Ph.D., Livestock nutritionist
“The revised and updated The Sheep Book is what the literary critics would call a ‘must read’ for beginning shepherds. For that matter the lists of sources for supplies, of web sites, of organizations, of breed associations, and of publications will be worth the price of the book to experienced shepherds. Ron's insistence from his first days as a sheep farmer on raising sheep outside on grass with no heavy equipment put him ahead of the low-tech, sustainable ag movement. His scientific background and his ‘outside the box’ thinking make this a book of substance, significance, and originality without being the least bit pedantic.”
Guy Flora, Editor, The Shepherd
The Sheep Book carries the reader along through a year in a sheep's life during which sheep and shepherd form a symbiosis. A knowledgeable shepherd manages a flock in such a way as to provide an appropriate environment for all phases of the annual journey from breeding through pregnancy, lambing, growing of lambs, marketing of lamb and wools, and revitalization of the sheep for another cycle.
The Sheep Book guides the reader to working with the instincts of the sheep—treating them as animals with special talents and ways of behaving that can be engaged and directed. The reader is encouraged to learn from the sheep, for they are the best teachers of a successful shepherd.
Ron Parker is an academic geologist who turned to sheep raising in 1976. He is author of numerous magazine articles, former editor of the Minnesota Shepherd, and recipient of the Distinguished Service Award from the Minnesota Lamb and Wool Growers. He is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
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