Martin County 4-H has awarded 4-H member Addison Barrick of the East Chain 4-H Club a wether dam breeding ewe as part of the Martin County 4-H Breeding Ewe Essay Contest. Gopher Club Lambs provided the breeding ewe and will serve as a mentor.
Martin County 4-H members in grades 6-11 were invited to participate in the second year of this program. To apply, the 4-H’er had to complete an application and include the following:
- Completed essay (limited to two (2) typed pages) explaining why they felt they were the right candidate to receive a breeding ewe while addressing their commitment to 4-H and agriculture, explain future goals and how a breeding ewe would help achieve those goals, and their ability to properly raise and show the animal.
- One reference letter from a 4-H adult volunteer/leader.
- One reference letter from an adult who is not related to the applicant that can speak on their abilities and commitment to this kind of program.
The applications were then reviewed by the Martin County 4-H Livestock Initiative Committee.
This program was created to further grow the Martin County 4-H sheep project area while rewarding a deserving 4-H member in their efforts to become further involved in raising and showing sheep. This program is a three-year commitment as the youth member must show the breeding ewe in the next two county fairs and then have the ewe bred in the third year.
Addison said, “We started out in the 4-H Adopt-a-Lamb program in 2021 and showed two wethers (my brother showed one, and I showed the other). In 2022, we joined the program again…and bought two ewes to show also. I enjoyed showing, and we decided to start our own small sheep herd. We lambed for the first time in 2023. I have learned a lot about responsibility with having to do chores, and we also had a bottle lamb this year. I have learned how to vaccinate lambs, dock tails, and treat sick lambs and ewes.”
To learn more about additional 4-H opportunities, contact your local Extension/4-H office at 507-235-3341 or firstname.lastname@example.org.