Yes, it is an extremely Ancient and Excellent Idea. It has so many advantages that we will outline in this article. It might depend on the size of your flock, but this way not only can you keep informed about your Flock by sight but also by sound. History takes livestock Bells to 5000 BC.
Why do Sheep Need Bells?
Bells for you sheep flock is a very inexpensive safety item for your Sheep. Cost Running from 3.00 – $ 16 If your farm and grazing lands have hills and Valley, you can quickly determine the location of your Flock. You can also tailor the bells and bell sounds, you put on your flock to differentiate many different Messages.
It not only can give comfort to you in knowing the condition of your flock.
It also gives comfort to the other sheep knowing where the rest of your family is.
It also allows you Guard Dog / Sheep Dogs to quickly know the location and status of the Flock they are guarding.
Putting Bells on Sheep after Shearing
If your sheep are not used to wearing the bells. You can easily install them right after shearing. Thay will allow you to get collar size correct. If the Sheep is not used to it they will become accustomed to it quickly. Alos many Sheep farmers install Fly / Tick / Flea at that time and special collars aid in that also.
Sheep with Bells in Forest better than Binoculars
Many times Peoples pasture lands are riddled with patches of forest, trees, fields that are over the tops of the sheep. They easily can be hidden from sight for many reasons. It is hard to keep an eye on your sheep and when you have challenging terrain. Sheep can also get caught in brush easily and completely hidden from sight. Meaning you would have to be very close to even catch sight of them.
Animals seem to have a great ability to hide in brush, fields. Over the years we have been amazed how well animals been able to camouflage themselves. Especially if the breed of Sheep you have a color that blends in. Even When they get dirty. They can easily be hidden from sight. If Sheep gets in trouble its bell can go crazy which also will alert you.
Also if you look there are long-distance bells also available, under $ 15 Each.
Guard Dogs Sheep Dogs know a Normal Bell Sound
Many large sheep farms have sheepdogs to help them manage their sheep Flocks. Guard dogs are very intelligent and the sound of a Sheeps bell will convey a language
Sheep Dogs handle sheep in Two ways, one is that sheep have a tendency to go together in a group. The Dogs will work the outside of the Flock to keep them together
Second, they then will begin to move the Flock in the direction they are wanted to move them. The Bells let them combine moving the herd by sight, and then listening for any stragglers or strays by the sound of lagging back bells.
Sheep Dogs can Recognize an Alarm Bell Sound
The normal sheep will wander, graze usually at a calm rhythmic motion. Bells ring is generated by the movement of the sheep. When sheep become distressed they will move faster, jump, rattle, flee, run, switch directions rapidly. Many things can cause fear and panic to hit a flock of Sheep.
It could be a predator, could be a storm, Rams fighting, flock taking off at a dead run. All these are very loud audible sounds that are very different from the bells of calm sheep. It immediately lets the dog know something is wrong, even if he has not seen the Danger. You also have the fact that the Dog’s hearing is very acute. Easily can interpret the distress in the sheep sounding alarmed through the warning of the bells.
Different Sheep Bells can Differentiate between Breeds
There are many different types of Bells. Different size and different materials make their sound different and common to that type of bells. For example a Brass Bell would sound dramatically different than a wood bell.
If You wanted to put all one type of bell on one breed of sheep, and then another type, or maybe none on the other type of sheep you have it would help you tell the difference of the two. Also if you are having to separate the breeds out, make identity much easier.
Sound of Bells tells you if Flock is where they are Suppose to be
The Sound of the Bells will give you an audible direction of where your flocks are. It also makes it much easier to check on the status and location of your flocks at night. nNight is generally when most predators are out and about, under the cover of Darkness.
Sheep wander a lot and you can tell what direction they have wandered to even if out of sight.
Types of Sheep Bells
- Bell Collars – Large Dog Collars work not only to hold Sheep Bells but you can add Pendant with Cattle Flies tags. You Can incorporate 935 milligrams of cypermethrin for Tick Control
- Long Distance Bells
- Ram/Billy Bell
- Steel Bells
- Swiss Bells
- Barn Bells
There are many types of Bells, most of them are produced in Europe and Asia. There are also bells that are louder some reaching 115 Decibel levels – which is very loud. These are mostly used for cattle.
We have read where all types of farmers have used bells for identifying their flocks, Dog owners have put Bells on their Pets, Birds have had Bells on them. It is a very powerful quick location Tool.
Loudest Bell on Ram will know when Breeding
Putting the loudest bell you have on your Ram, you will be able to tell when he is mating with your ewes. He will be making all kinds of motion trying to impress his Romances. Which will give you a heads up, if you are recording when and how many times a ewe got caught? In well-managed flocks there is a lot of documented details on Breeding, Times, Locations, and Rams.
Bells Mostly used in these Countries
- Countries where Shepherds Stay with their flocks
The United States are latecomers to the Sheep Farming Industries, whereas in Europe, China, Africa, and the Medertanian Areas. Bells have been used for thousands of years, helping to know the location of their animals
In the United States Sheep are in Fences – contained from Wandering. I cannot speak or all Areas, but I have witnessed in South America Guyana that Peoples livestock wander the Fields, the Roads in Peoples yards
In Africa, it was the same I have many times down the main street of the village and I followed someone’s personnel turkey strutting through town.
I have attended church and had to scatter the chickens and goats from the church Building before we could begin services
In Ireland I was amazed as I drove through the country and saw flocks of sheep with their bottom rumps painted orange, blue, and green. To mark Their Owners Property, Because of the free Range roaming of the flocks. In many of these situations, the animals had their own bell around their necks.
History of CowBells
Earliest History 14 and 15th Centuries. There are examples of Ancient Roman Sheep Bells in Museums. Over the years there have been many symbols and different artwork done on the Livestock bells. These designs have mostly been decorative, or identification of a farmer’s property. Also in ancient times, some would have signs and symbols to symbolize protection from evil spirits, and favor of Gods.
Some Ancient Bell Collars were made of Wood.
Materials that Bells are Made of
- Wood – From Indonesia
- Plated Metals
- Earlier Charms – medallions
Modern Manufacturing of Sheep / Livestock Bells
There are many countries when you look Worldwide that are today producing Livestock Bells for Farm Animals. These are the Countries that have current production Facilities. we have only found one in The United States.
- Connecticut – Bevin Brothers Manufacturing Company Only US Manufacturer
Special Events in Europe
In Western Europe, there are Festivals that Livestock is adorned with Bells symbolizing important changes of the Seasons.
Is the Festival in the Spring where the Villages are celebrating their Livestock moving back into their pastures after the departure of Winter. The Animals are Laviously decorated with Bells, Flowers and are paraded through the Villages.
This is a Fall Festival Celebrating the opposite. The Livestock coming down from the pastures preparing for winter. This is not only in Western Europe But also in Germany and Alpine countries.