Where have all the sheep gone?


Wayleggo (ˌweɪlɛˈɡəʊ), interj, Origin; NZ, away here! let go!; a shepherd’s call to a dog on completion of a task

Maybe its living in the Waikato, but seems that all I see these days are cows. Sheep are in decline, but they have shaped our past and landscape.

Back before dairying found its way into the high country of the South Island; I spent a summer as a rousie in a shearing gang , but weirdly my most enduring memory of sheep-dogs is Sunday TV. I’m sure NZ readers of a certain age will remember the amazing feats on “A Dogs Show”

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6 thoughts on “Where have all the sheep gone?

    • Thanks for the link. This is a quirky and tricky piece of music which to me sounds a little bit like an electric guitar mimicking a banjo, it will always ‘belong’ to country calendar aye!

      • Yes, I’ve always loved it for it’s complexity. I think I had a Peter Posa record with it on, once…I am not a musician, but I believe it actually is a tricky piece of music. I love the joyous, fluid, rolling feel to it… so evocative of hill-country landscapes and vibrant outdoorsy stuff… and now, of the past.

  1. Even on the South Island there seem to be more beef cattle than sheep these days. Not sure what the numbers are, but 10-12 years ago I was working for the Dairy Board and even then dairy was a bigger industry by $$$. And I suspect if you combined the numbers of beef and dairy cattle, the poor little sheepies would be outnumbered…

    • Thanks for the comment – I once visited a high country station near Tekapo which I believe was owned by Armani (maybe the flock or perhaps first rights to the wool?) Anyhow fished the Grays Stream and a few others nearby late season – fantastic brown trout fishing but very difficult light. Icebreaker gear is nice for sure. I treated myself to one of their coats a few years back – wore it to death in London – thinking of treating myself to a new one soon.

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