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Thread: Dirty sheep?

  1. #1
    Member mossyhorn's Avatar
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    Default Dirty sheep?

    I went for a climb today in the Chugach and saw a bunch of sheep, including three rams that were together. These three rams were real dirty and I watched them walk up to a bank and lean against it and just rub and rub. Their entire bodies were were just covered. I saw other sheep and they were stark white.

    Anyway, seemed odd. Anyone know why they would rub like that?

  2. #2
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    If ya gotta itch scratch it!

  3. #3
    Moderator stid2677's Avatar
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    My guess is they are trying to rub off their shedding winter coat.


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  4. #4

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    The older sheep, particularly the rams will always appear dirtier than the younger sheep. They rub and bed in shale. The oil in the shale tends to saturate and discolor them. The older the sheep, the more laying down they do...the dirtier they get. A young sheep, that is always bouncing around or the guard for the band is always whiter. imo
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  5. #5
    Member Chisana's Avatar
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    I don't think it's oil in the shale, rather dirt sucked up up into hollow hairs via capilary action. All of the sheep I've killed in a certain drainage have had very heavy mineral stains.

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    The one we got last year was more silver/gray then he was white. He spent a lot of time in black dirt eating it and laying around. We also saw some cave dwellers in caves with the same black dirt.

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