We are a small market lamb farm planning to move back to the Skagit area. We are currently in Ellensburg and need to relocate due to changes in our housing situation.
My name is Christopher Craig and have been farming for the last nine years and raising livestock for 10. My farming life began while working on a horse ranch on Fidalgo Island where I had grown up 25 years, while at this time began intensive garden projects and raising goats at home. After a couple years there, I moved to Whidbey Island, where I met my now wife and began work on an angus cow/calf operation south of Oak Harbor where I stayed for about three years. Upon finding out we were to become parents, we relocated to Ellensburg to be near my wife's family where I began and still work at Greenbow Farm, a mutli-species rotational grazing operation. I have worked there for four years. About three years ago I began raising sheep and started a market lamb/4-H operation with 4 Scottish Blackface ewes and a ram, we have now grown to 35 ewes and 4 rams. Our farming practices have been heavily influenced by the renowned Masanobu Fukuoka's natural farming techniques. We are now looking to relocate back to our roots in the area of Skagit County. The property we are currently at is going to be sold near the end of the year and we don't care to stay in Kittitas any longer. We don't need housing since we'll be living on my fathers property back on Fidalgo. We'd like to lease land till we have enough capital to purchase our own and make a little plot of land our home.
At around the age of 20 I got a few Lamancha goats which got my foot in the door as far as husbandry goes. While raising them I began working on Rosario Ranch on the north western part of Fidalgo Island. At the ranch my job was general handyman stuff but also the feeding and mucking to stalls. After a couple years there I started work at View Haven Angus, an 100 head cow/calf operation south of Oak Harbor where i was a ranch hand for nearly three years. The work on the ranch was general chores, feeding cattle in winter, managing grazing rotations in spring and summer, loading and working cattle, and really everything else beyond driving them to the sale barn. Once we moved to Ellensburg I immediately got another farm hand job at Greenbow farm; a multi-species rotational grazing farm. Greenbow farm is a soy/corn free grass based mob grazing style farm. We raise beef, pork, chicken, eggs, and lamb. My duties there are again everything but driving to farmers markets and picking up feed for the chickens and hogs. While working at Greenbow Farm I started a small flock of sheep and have grown it over the last three years to 35 ewes and 4 rams. The breeds we have are Scottish Blackface sheep and Suffolk. We use electric nets to mob graze and keep our animal in a quick rotation. We feed hay during the winter lamb early spring. We plan on getting our flock to a large enough size (100-150) to raise them comfortably and move into perhaps raising cattle along side them. Our sales come from auction barn sales and 4-H club lamb sales.
To graze sheep and potentially raise some broiler chickens.