CRAFTY: Ingenious Sheep Show steward Annie Mitchell says drought will impact sheep numbers at this year's Stanthorpe Show, forcing them to think outside the box.
CRAFTY: Ingenious Sheep Show steward Annie Mitchell says drought will impact sheep numbers at this year's Stanthorpe Show, forcing them to think outside the box.

Ingenious plan aims to address livestock show shortage

AN ingenious idea has been dreamt up with Stanthorpe Show organisers concerned by potential livestock numbers.

With sheep few and far between across the district, a new exhibition will hope to continue a proud tradition.

The difference? These sheep entries won’t be live.

Ingenious Sheep Show steward Annie Mitchell concedes it will be different, but offers a creative opportunity in a range of categories.

“My sister lives near Birdsville and she mentioned she’d gone to a show where they had had drought for a long time and obviously there weren’t any animals.

“So the local stations had made their own ‘sheep’.

“I thought that was a pretty cool idea.

“We’ve got over 110 years of proud history here showing stud rams, stud ewes and we don’t want to stop that.

“We want to include the whole district in showing their ‘sheep’,” Ms Mitchell said.

There’s five different categories for entrants to partake in.

Primary school age children and under can craft a lamb. High school age students can make a wether. There’s also coloured sheep, stud ram and stud ewe sections. All entries need to be 3D sculptures or statues.

“Each of them will be judged on what they’d normally be judged on,” Ms Mitchell said.

“We do have a proper sheep judge.

“The ram will be judged on its masculinity so it’s up to the artists creativity.

“We’re encouraging everyone to have their own stud and name their sheep.”

The shift from the normal show section demonstrates how crippling the drought has been.

“My parents just sold the last lot of their sheep,” Ms Mitchell said.

“It’s pretty sad. By all accounts there’s not going to be a lot of sheep at the show.

“There will certainly be wool.

“I think animal numbers will be down across the board but it doesn’t mean it won’t be a good show.”

The section is sponsored by Granite Belt Water Relief.

Entry forms can be found on the Stanthorpe Agricultural Show Society website.