Posts tagged ‘Sheep’

Where does wool come from?


Nearly all the wool we buy comes from the fleecy coats of sheep.  The sheep are usually shorn of their fleece each spring.

Nearly all the wool we buy comes from the warm, woolly hair that covers the bodies of sheep.

The coat of wool from a full-grown sheep is called a fleece.

Once a year, usually in the spring, the sheep are given a haircut and all the fleece is sheared off.  The fleece is packed in bates and then sent to market.

When the fleece arrives at the woolen mill, it is sorted according to fineness and length and thoroughly washed to remove all the dirt and crease.

After it has been dried, the clean wool goes to a carding room.  Here, large, revolving cylinders with wire teeth straighten the soft, fluffy wool and comb it into a filmy sheet.

Next, the carded wool is drawn into soft, loose “ropes”  called rovings.  The wool rovings then go to the spinning room where machines twist them into yarn.

The woolen yarn is now ready to be woven into cloth. – Dick Rogers


Why do cows chew their cuds?

A cow’s stomach has four parts.  It must chew its food twice before the food can be digested.

Cattle have the habit of swallowing their food and later bringing it back to the mouth to be rechewed.  Hence they are called “ cud-chewing” animals.

The cow has an end way of digesting its food.  A cow’s stomach is divided into four compartments.  Each compartment helps digest the food the cow eats.


While a cow is grazing it chews its food only slightly.  When the food is first, swallowed, it goes into the first compartment of the stomach where it is moistened.

From there it passes into the second compartment.  Have the food forms into a soft ball called a cud.  Later, when the cow is resting, the cud moves back up in the cow’s mouth to be chewed thoroughly.

This time, when the food is swallowed, it passes into the third and fourth compartments when real digestion takes place.

Animals that chew cuds and have this kind of stomach are called ruminants.  Ox, deer sheep, goats and antelope are ruminants.  – Dick Rogers


What are musk oxen?

Musk Oxen

Musk oxen are shaggy-haired mammals which resemble a small buffalo.  They line in the arctic barrens of north America.

The musk ox, is an odd-looking animal that resembles a small, shaggy-haired buffalo.  A fully grown musk ox may be little over four feet high at the shoulders and weight 700 pounds.

The musk ox is not really an ox.  It is a relatives of goats and antelopes.

The first part of the animal’s name is also inaccurate – it has no musky odor, as was once believed.  In the wild, must oxen are found on the treeless tundra and snowfields of Canada and Greenland.

They travel in small herds.  When threatened by wolves that, prey upon them, the herd forms a protective circle around the young.  No wise wolf would attack such a fortress of tossing honors!

Once united almost to extinction, the now-protected musk oxen are being raised much like sheep for the silky wool, called “quiviut” that grows underneath their shaggy coats.  Garments made of quiviut are very warm and tight in weight. – Dick Rogers