Make a building next to the paddock.
A modern building of concrete and sheet iron is too dear.
You can improve the housing of sheep and goats, which is called a sheep shed or goat shed, without spending too much money. Use local materials.
Before spending money, you must reckon what the money will produce.
If the money spent produces little, it is not worth while. Do not do it. You will become poorer, and will be discouraged.
Sheep and goats must not be put in a dirty, wet place.
Choose a dry place, on a little rise.
If you build the shed in a low- lying place, rain water and urine cannot flow away.
Put a layer of concrete (cement and gravel) on the ground.
Build the shed where the wind will take the smell away from the house.
To protect the animals from the wind, build a wall of earth up to the roof on the side where the wind usually blows.
To protect the animals from sun and rain, make a roof of straw or palm leaves.
Put a gutter on the lower side of the roof.
Make the gutter of a bamboo cut in half lengthwise, or of hollow wood.
Slope the gutter so that the rainwater runs into an old drum.
When the shed is finished, make three stalls inside:
· A small stall for the male or males.
The males must not be with the herd, otherwise they will fertilize the ewes when this is not wanted. Leave them with the ewes when you want the males to fertilize them.
· Two large stalls: one for the females which have young ones, the other for females which have no young ones, and for castrated males.
Put straw on the ground This straw, mixed with droppings and urine, rots and makes manure.
When the straw is partly rotted, put clean, dry straw on top of it.
See that the animals are always on clean straw.
When there is a lot of manure in the shed, take it out.
You can take it out to the field and plough it into the ground at once.
Or you can make a heap by the side of the shed, and take the manure to the fields when you are ploughing.
Sheep and goat dung makes good manure. It adds a lot of organic matter and mineral salts to the fields.
Use a cart to carry straw and manure.
A sheep shed
The animals must not be crowded in the shed. If they are crowded, they do not have enough room to lie down, they ruminate badly, they hurt themselves, they get ill.
Two adult animals need a space of 1.5 square metres.
For example, put 6 adult animals in a shed 3 metres by 3 metres.
The doors of the shed must be wide. Make them 2 metres wide, then the animals will not be crowded in going through, and will not get hurt.
Disinfect the shed every two weeks with water and potassium chloride or water and cresol.
· Alongside the shed make paddocks were the animals can walk about.
· A small paddock for the males next to their door; the males must not be with the flock.
· A big paddock for the females and their young; the young ones are left with the rest of the flock when they are between 1 and 2 weeks old.
In the paddocks put:
· Feed troughs to give the
animals their feed supplement.
· Watering troughs from which they can drink.
Feed troughs and watering troughs are made of hollowed tree trunks or drums cut in half.
Shed and paddocks