Okay, ya know how I said I fixed the hole in the fence? Well, I did. Only the problem is, there was more than one. One thing I've figured out already is that once all green vegetation has been consumed in the sheep enclosure, anything with chlorophyll outside the pen is more enticement than they can stand. Oh, and they're sneaky about it too.
I put them out in the pasture yesterday afternoon for several hours after I finished work and could be around to keep an eye on things. Still no sheep dog, so as it was getting dark, back I go, out to the truck, to spend another night watching over my flock. I put them back in their enclosure, and they milled around a bit and then flopped down next to their little unfinished shed. They seem to understand what it is for but it doesn't seem to bother them that it has no roof or siding, and offers zero protection from anything. They like it, and go in there to rest whenever they want, and no matter how hot it is, they seem to want to pile right up against each other.
I settled in for another night and after finding nothing interesting on the radio, eventually started nodding off. At about 10:15 I wake up and see Jilly Bean standing over by the leaky fence. She's staring off into the woods and I see no sign of any other sheep. I think the only reason she isn't with them is she's too rotund to fit through the hole in the fence...
I hit the lights, get out of the truck, walk over to where Jill is standing and I hear much crackling and munching but I cannot see one single sheep. At this point I know I need help so I go back to the truck and call Greg on my cell. I'm pretty sure he was asleep but I offer him no options and just tell him to get some sheep feed in a bucket and get down here and help me rustle up some damned sheep. He comes straight away, and we start looking for the hole in the fence while shaking the bucket. Well, it's been less than a week and those little buggers know the sound of feed in a bucket. They all come running and crash directly into the fence. I can't get them to go through the little hole they managed to escape through so I have to cut the fence to get them back in. They pile through and I dump their feed into their little tubs on the ground, and while they're busy inhaling their favorite thing in the whole world, Greg and I quickly fix the fence where I cut it, and fixed the "new" hole they had most recently escaped through.
These things are not user friendly!
I need to get a couple of bales of good alfalfa/grass hay so I can throw some in there at night so they'll have something to munch on in their pen and they won't be so determined to sneak off into the woods at night.
It's not like they're starving though...