best mules for heathland

Purli R

Member
I dunno,which type of mules are best for grazing heathland?:p:D.......cheaper option would be a masham (& better)
 

Ysgythan

Member
Location
Ammanford
When you say heathland, what's actually growing on it?

Norfolk Horn bred originally on East Anglian heathland, I think?
The Norfolk was. The last ram and few ewes were taken to Stoneleigh in the 80s for a breeding program. The ram was a one ball wonder and died in a ditch before he could sire any lambs. They decided to use a Suffolk tup on the ewes and created the “Norfolk Horn” - ironically its one of the most recently created native breeds therefore.
 
Sorry but if your Welshies aren’t producing the numbers it’s for good reason. Either disease/parasites, stocking density or feed availability they are the most honest little sheep I have ever known and if it weren’t for the jumping ability I would have nothing else. You can run two welsh mountain for every 1 north country mule too so lambs can be got that way.
 
Location
Cotswolds
Sorry but if your Welshies aren’t producing the numbers it’s for good reason. Either disease/parasites, stocking density or feed availability they are the most honest little sheep I have ever known and if it weren’t for the jumping ability I would have nothing else. You can run two welsh mountain for every 1 north country mule too so lambs can be got that way.
I agree with this. You are better having 2 Welshies at 1.2 lambs than you are with a mule at 1.9 lambs. The welsh ewe will thrive on poor land and the mules with waste away. Mules are born hungry and need good lowland ground.
 

Ysgythan

Member
Location
Ammanford
I agree with this. You are better having 2 Welshies at 1.2 lambs than you are with a mule at 1.9 lambs. The welsh ewe will thrive on poor land and the mules with waste away. Mules are born hungry and need good lowland ground.
Not necessarily. We’ve kept Welsh Mules on Grade 5 land for almost 30 years. One lot was reclaimed open cast land, and more recently on poorly drained peaty ground. They will happily live and rear lambs on grass alone provided your stocking rate isn’t too high. We buy ewe lambs and run them on their first winter. When they lamb they’re well and truly used to our system. I wouldn’t fancy buying shearlings that have wintered in Herefordshire.

We also wintered them away and lambed indoors though, if that’s not your plan then you may find it more difficult. Not necessarily impossible.

Perhaps the obvious is staring us in the face here though, why don’t you buy a BFL tup and make your own? Sell most but keep a small flock of Mules to test your system before deciding whether to switch over to them completely.
 

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