I have been shearing since 2004, and fell in love with the craft right away. I shear sheep, angora and pygora goats, alpacas, and llamas (and clip the occasional pony if asked!). I believe in a gentle, and low-impact approach to shearing so that both owners and animals do not suffer stress. When I come to your farm, my primary concern is your animals’ welfare and a clean and painless harvesting of their fiber.
I select my assistants based on their abilities as well as their gentle attitude towards animals. My assistants will always put your animals’ welfare first. You may see a different helper depending on the date and location. My current helpers are Sean, Brionna, Jake, and Alex, and I am adding to the team in the 2014 season.
I have attended the MD/DE Sheep Shearing School and the Light Livestock Alpaca Shearing Seminar in New York, and sheep shearing masterclass with New Zealand shearer John Bradfield. Iwill be training again this year under Matt Best and Jay Mariacher to refine my alpaca shearing skills. I shear at over 150 farms in the mid-Atlantic region annually.
Shearing is an act of partnership, and I need your assistance to make it a positive experience for everyone. I keep my equipment clean and disinfected, and try very hard not to nick the animals during the shearing process. However, I bring a full first aid kit in the event that anyone (me, included) gets nicked. I ask you to be ready for shearing, with animals penned in on empty stomachs in a clean environment.
I do not recommend administering shots or worm medicine at the same time that an animal is sheared. Shearing is a stressful experience, and the adrenaline in the system can either negate the value of the vaccine, and/or cause unwanted reactions in the animal. I have witnessed extremely negative results of de-worming anemic animals at shearing time, including death.
I shear for fiber, hobby, pet flocks, animal sanctuaries, educational and governmental institutions as well as production flocks. My clients include the George Washington Birthplace National Monument, Child Help, Lathrop E. Smith Environmental Education Center, Lost and Found Horse Rescue Foundation, and Oxon Hill Farm. I offer educational demonstrations upon request.
Flock sizes that I shear vary from 1 to 100. If you are in my travel area, I will come out even if you have only one or two animals.
“Your professionalism goes above and beyond. You care so much about your clients and their animals besides just shearing. If we have any husbandry questions, you are very prompt about replying with helpful advice. Thank you so much for all the help you’ve given me. My alpacas and I greatly appreciate all of your help and kindness!”
— Fairwinds Farm
Just a note to sing the praises of Anne at Star Gazing Farm. I am by no means a sheep expert, but always have room for animals needing homes. In this case, four sheep. Anne has been a great help to me by sharing her expertise and good humor. Good humor being essential when trying to shear my beloved “Lil Butt” — a 400 pound bundle of black wool, no neck and an attitude towards being sheared. Anne had been a great help in seeing that my little flock are well cared for and in good condition. I would not hesitate to recommend her and, in fact, have done so in the past.
— Weston Farm
We’ve know Anne for several years now and what a delight!! She’s knowledgeable, fun, a hard worker and a devoted animal lover; plus she’s not afraid of DIRT!! Anne has been an inspiration to me because my husband and I are not very experienced with llamas and alpacas and, yet, we’ve become parents to a number who needed a place to call home. Anne has taken the care of our pets on as her own. She even put us in touch with someone who could come to our home and do “barn” repairs which she had brought to our attention. Whew! What a relief! It’s an honor to know Anne and a pleasure to work with her. We have an Hispanic helper who feeds all our farm animals and who is the one who gathers the livestock up to the barn before Anne’s visit. Wouldn’t you know it! Anne even speaks Spanish and can communicate with our helper better than we can! All of this benefits our pets, of course. They join me in saying “Thank You, Anne”.
—Mistletoe and Mulberry Farm
“We just love Anne! She’s a real gem of a person and is great with our animals. She shears and trims the hooves and teeth of our alpacas, miniature llama and trims the hooves of our miniature pigs! She is reliable, honest, FAST and our family looks forward to her visits!”
— Squeals on Wheels
“We just wanted to thank you again very much for doing such a great job shearing our alpacas! Your patience and caring nature were very obvious. We appreciated you taking the time to separate the cuts for us. We look forward to having you back again next year”
— Dacoda Farm Alpacas
“Anne has a deep affinity for animals, and genuinely cares for them. Her considerable skill with the shears is most impressive, but her compassion and concern make her invaluable.”
— Sunset Woods Farm
I am happy to provide references to you from the happy animals (and their owners) for whom I’ve sheared.
If I do not serve your area, or am unavailable to help you, please check with the American Sheep Industry Association’s online shearers database.
Interested in talking with other shearers online?