How to safely unload your new Soay sheep into their pasture

Believe it or not, one of the most common roadblocks to a new Soay owner getting off to a good start is the inability to get the new flock safely off the transport truck and into the pasture. Last weekend we encountered the closest thing to a perfect setup we have ever encountered when delivering sheep. I took only one picture of the pasture and gate where we unloaded three handsome little wethers to the safekeeping and enjoyment of Scott and Jill. This one picture tells it all:

What’s so good about this setup? Good sturdy gate posts so there is a straight line for Steve to line up the right back side of the trailer, the side that has the trailer door hinges. No sheep can bolt through that 1″ space. On the left, Scott’s big well-aligned gate nestles right up against the side of the trailer. With Scott standing there, a skittish sheep cannot jump over the back wheel and through the 6-8″ space above the wheel. For once we did not need extra sections of hog panel or cattle panel to create barriers on the two sides of the trailer. In fairness, it also helped that Scott and Jill had a lush green pasture waiting for their new sheep.

For now …