Wherein lies the responsibility of the Herder

lillylillys fleecelillyclup1

These are pictures

of a Mohair fleece

that came in the

mail from a farm

in Iowa. When it


I wrote her and she said that they are called beggar lice in Iowa. Here is her response in all of entirety, as I don’t want anything to be left out(name of Farm in Iowa excluded, of course):


We keep the different animals in different lots.We rotate the sheep and the goats, so they eat down the different grasses. The goats can not have copper so we don’t feed the same grains.

Any how, during the weaning dates, we brought the grown up goats over to the lot by the house. Which is fenced in by a electric type woven fence, that for months had kept in the sheep, with out any issues. The grown up goats decided the grass looked greener on the other side of the fence. One day I looked out the house window and seen the guard llama running around. The girls were not far behind. So they did get in the woods for about ten minutes. This is where they picked up the sticker burrs (In Iowa we call the burs, beggar lice). Because we knew people would stray away from any thing that dealt with lice. We didn’t say the word lice on our site.

By the way ZuZU had a late kid, so it wasn’t the weaning date for her. She was still over with the kids, being a gramdma, sort of.

Because of the burs, we priced accordingly.

We want your happy though.What do you want us to do?I have worked with some other fleeces, from the other girls that had gotten out. To me I would rather deal with the burs, than trying to pick out small flakes of VM.

I like to spin the fleece, in locks, and just pick out as I come to a burr.

When we sheared we threw out the really bad sections. Had thought the rest of the fleece was still useable, hate to throw away. Trying to make ends met here on the farm.Like we said, we will do what ever it takes to make you happy. Just let us know!!!We understand your concerns, so we are willing to do, what ever you choose to do.If you want to send back, we will pay for return shipping, and refund you money.”

Alright, here are a few more pictures. Can you pick this out, as you spin?

lillyclup2lillyclup3Well, she did say

that they threw

out the ‘really

bad sections.”





Well, I told her that I’d pick through it and see what I could salvage and have asked her to replace the rest. It is such a shame, as the fleece is really nice. If it wasn’t for the sticker burrs!

I do know to expect vm. Sometimes lots and lots of vm. But, selling to a market of hand spinners, shouldn’t there be some guidelines. Some sense of what is reasonable. Or is a raw fleece to really to be considered so carelessly just because it is raw? If you have to keep something in mind when pricing, doesn’t that make it worth mentioning?


One thought on “Wherein lies the responsibility of the Herder

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