Within the past 10 years a great interest in sheep handling facilities has developed in this country.
I feel that this is due to the realization that as we increase the numbers and the size of the sheep we work with, it becomes increasingly important that we do so in as efficient a manner as possible and with a minimum of physical labor.
Reduce work. We all can appreciate the physically demanding and exhausting work involved with sorting, weighing, worming and pregnancy checking a number of sheep.
A good working or handling facility whether permanent or temporary, or portable can reduce the physical demands of these jobs to a very manageable level.
Handling facilities have been in existence for centuries in countries with sheep populations and have been sophisticated to a remarkable degree.
We, however, are more concerned with the basic requirements for a successful facility or yard and will concern ourselves in this area.
Basics. In simple terms, a yard is needed where sheep can be stored for short periods and then moved easily and quickly to a work area where they can be separated into different groups and handled individually.
Based on this idea, it is probable that no one design is best for all farms.
This is because the yards must be fitted to the operator, his sheep and the operations performed on the sheep, and area available for the yards to be constructed.
Parts. The sheep yard is divided into the following parts:
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