May sheep shearing school adds wool science and handling program

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WASHINGTON, Pa. — If you are interested in learning more about sheep shearing or the science of wool and how to handle it, plan to attend the Washington County (Pa.) Sheep Shearing School May 6-7, or the Wool Science and Handling Program on May 7 at the George Wherry Family Farm, south of Scenery Hill, Pa.

This Penn State Extension Program is being co-sponsored by the Pennsylvania Sheep and Wool Growers Association.

Shearing school

The shearing school will be held May 6- 7, and runs from 9 a.m. until approximately 3:30 p.m. both days.

The school will cover professional shearing patterns, tagging and eyeing, equipment maintenance and repair, and wool handling and preparation.

The school is geared toward beginning shearers, but experienced people may attend. To allow for as much one-on-one instruction as possible, registration is being limited the first 18 registrants.

The registration deadline is April 22. The registration fee is $30, which includes tuition and handouts.

Those attending are asked to wear work clothes and bring leather gloves. Participants may bring a bag lunch or purchase lunch for $6/person/day.

All shearing equipment is furnished.

Wool Science and Handling Class

The Wool Science and Handling Class will be held from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. May 7.

Fleeces from the shearing school will be used for this course. The purpose of this course is to help wool producers better understand what constitutes an acceptable fleece and how to better handle their own flock in order to achieve the best clip possible.

Topics to be covered during the wool science and wool-handling program include:

• Wool fiber growth, development and production;

• Objective wool measuring;

• Wool contamination and handling practices;

• Wool classing, packaging, labeling and marking.

The fee for the program is $20, which includes tuition and materials.

For more information on both, contact Walt Bumgarner at 724-438-011; e-mail to wob10@psu.edu, or contact Sharon Dunmire at 724- 228-6881.

Registration fees for both should be sent to the Washington County Extension Office, 100 West Beau St., Washington, Pa. 15301, Attn: Sharon Dunmire. Send name, address, phone number, e-mail for all registrants and make check out to Washington County Cooperative Extension.

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