Montana State University

Sheep shearing courses set for mid-March

October 26, 2010 -- MSU News Service

Alumni from MSU's sheep shearing courses shear sheep at the Sieben Ranch in 2009. MSU's next Wool Harvesting and Handling School will be held in mid-March. (MSU photo by Kelly Gorham).   High-Res Available

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MSU News Service
Tel: (406) 994-4571
BOZEMAN -- Montana State University Extension will hold a Wool Harvesting and Handling School next spring. Since enrollment is limited and the first students registered are the first enrolled, early registration is highly recommended.

The beginning sheep shearing course will run from March 12 through March 14, followed by an advanced class from March 15 through 17. The initial meeting will be held at the Montana Wool Lab on the MSU campus. Hands-on training will occur at MSU's Red Bluff Research Ranch approximately 30 miles west of Bozeman. The registration fee for each course is $125. The cost for attending both is $200. High school students are encouraged to enroll, but anyone under 16 must receive advance approval from one of the instructors.

Instructors are Jim Moore, Extension Agent for the MSU Sheep Institute, and Blaine County Extension Agent Mike Schuldt. Both have benefitted from training in New Zealand, as well as personal experience in Montana. They will be assisted by MSU Extension Sheep Specialist Rodney Kott and others.

"While it is true that Montana's sheep numbers have declined over the past few years, the recent increase in prices has sheep numbers climbing," Kott said. "And with this elevation in numbers comes an increasing demand for sheep shearers in Montana."

Sheep shearing can become a lucrative part-time or full-time career, he added.

For more information, or to register, contact Peggy Kelley at or (406) 994-3415.

Evelyn Boswell, (406) 994-5135 or