Welcome to Reedbird Farm
Home of beautiful registered Icelandic sheep, where natural health is a way of life.

At Reedbird Farm, we believe that God gave us the herbs of the field for use in food and to keep us healthy and we also believe this extends to our animals. Alethea chose to study traditional naturopathy and herbs to give her a better understanding of how the body uses the nutrition it takes in to stay healthy and how this can be applied from the ground up in the form of healthy soils, lush gardens and pastures and the resultant healthy livestock. See Natural Health or Boreal Balance for more information on her studies and degrees. All of this information has been a fascinating study but also an experiment in seeing firsthand how important living and growing naturally is for health and disease-free living in people and animals. It makes a difference in the sheep, their fleece, their milk, their lambs, their meat, their ability to excel to the best of their genetic potential. It's also in tune with living closer to the land, closer to how we feel God intended us to live as caretakers of His beautiful creation.

The exceptional milking qualities of the Icelandic breed allow ewes to raise twins and occasionally triplets on pasture to a good size by fall while growing that soft silky fleece they are famous for. Icelandic sheep are a triple purpose breed originally kept for meat, milk and fiber and they still perform well in all three categories in the United States. Please see Icelandic Sheep for more information.

We are constantly learning and enjoy hearing from others who are interested in natural health, herbs, Icelandic sheep or other breeds. If you have a comment or question, feel free to drop us a line. We offer other activities on the farm and off so check back under Classes or Articles. Our lamb lists will be posted each summer but you are welcome to enquire about animals for sale anytime.

Shepherd's Harvest Festival May 15-17, 2015 Lake Elmo, MN

Friday, May 15 1pm - 4pm: Minerals for Health in Sheep and Goats
Saturday, May 16, 9am - noon: Natural First Aid for the Farm
Saturday, May 16, 1pm - 4pm: Using Herbs for Deworming Sheep and Goats
Sunday, May 17, 9am - noon: Homeopathy

Instructor Bio:  

Alethea Kenney has her B.S. in Wildlife Science, her Doctorate in Naturopathy, International Certification in aromatherapy and a certification in Western Herbalism. She is currently taking the Foundations of Veterinary Homeopathy Course from British Institute of Homeopathy and writing an Animal Nutrition Course from a holistic point of view.   She works as aTraditional Naturopath specializing in herbs, essential oils and homeopathy and is the small ruminant consultant for North Central Feed Products, LLC in Gonvick, MN.   

She has spent many years working with animals in a veterinary setting and on the farm. This experience led her to design her own livestock mineral line (Back in Balance Minerals) that includes formulas for sheep, goats and horses.   The mineral line uses sound nutrition and bioavailability of minerals to provide proper nutrition in an easily-digested form.   

She also studies, consults, writes and teaches about natural dyes for fiber, and herbs and minerals as they relate to health in humans, companion animals and livestock, particularly sheep, goats and horses.   More information can be found on her websites:  www.borealbalance.com  www.backinbalanceminerals.com and www.reedbird.com


Each workshop would be 3 hours and include handouts.  $5/person materials fee for handouts

1.  Minerals for Health in Sheep and Goats:

This class is an overview of what minerals are needed for health in sheep and goats and what problems are associated with deficiencies and toxicities. Possible reasons for imbalances and health problems that may be prevented or helped through proper mineral supplementation will be discussed. Participants will learn possible reasons their animals may not be reaching their potential and what to look for in a sheep or goat mineral mix. This class is not a substitute for veterinary care or advice!

2.  Natural First Aid for the Farm

This class is an introduction to using herbs for simple first aid and common illnesses in sheep or goats  and their human caretakers. Participants will learn how to use some common herbs available on most farms or easily found in  health stores or online and what their medicinal action is. Handouts will include explanations and a materia medica - a list of the herbs, homeopathy and essential oils covered and their actions. By the time participants leave, hopefully they will be inspired to look at their fields and fencerows in a different light and notice the medicine chest at their feet. This class is not a substitute for veterinary advice or care! 

3.  Using Herbs for Deworming Sheep and Goats:

Herbal dewormers are becoming popular as people try to eliminate unnecessary chemicals from their farm programs and help reduce parasite resistance. But do they work? Participants will find out what some of the research shows and how to incorporate herbs into a multi-pronged parasite management plan.

4.  Homeopathy:  A holistic Way to Provide Better Health for Your Flocks

Participants will learn what homeopathy is , the science behind it and how it can be used for both acute and chronic conditions in animals, in conjunction with veterinary care and medications when needed. Homeopathy provides a non-invasive, safe way to address health imbalances in flocks, herds and people. But its use requires understanding some basic tenets of the healing system. This workshop will provide the basics needed to understand and start using homoeopathy.