冰岛羊 The Icelandic Sheep
The Icelandic Sheep
冰岛羊
Stron and hardy, Icelandic Sheep contributed to the nations survial
强健耐寒,冰岛羊对这个国家的生存贡献多多
Sheep. They seem to be everywhere, wandering freely all over the mountains and highlands as if they own the country. They are one of the most common animals in Iceland.
羊。羊群漫山遍野,在山区和高原自由游荡,好像它们才是土地的统治者。它们是冰岛最常见的一种动物。
Icelandic sheep are so called short–tailed animals, an ancient Nordic Breed which was formerly common in the north part of Western Europe, but now only found in a few areas of the world. It is a strong, hardy breed which has adapted well to Icelandic conditions.
冰岛羊也叫短尾动物,是古代北欧品种,以前在西欧北部地区常见。但目前只在世界少数地区能看到它们。它是强健耐寒的品种,很能适应冰岛的环境条件。
The Icelandic sheep is special in many ways. Part of the breed is called ‘leader sheep’ and possesses unique qualities, not found in any other sheep breed in the world. Many stories have been told of their rescuing both men and other sheep from danger.
冰岛羊在很多方面与众不同。这种羊当中有“头羊”,具有独特品性,在世界任何其他羊品种中都找不到。有很多故事都讲过遇到危险时,头羊能救人和其他羊。
Around 1980, there were about 10 times more sheep than people in the country or around 2,000,000 sheep (including the summer lambs) and 226,948 inhabitants. The number has now been reduced by almost half, because of overgrazing in some cases but also market developments.
1980年左右,冰岛羊的数量比人口多出10倍,有200,000只羊(包括夏季山羊),人口数是226,948人。现在羊的数量下降几乎一半,其中部分原因是防止过度放牧,还有市场发展需求造成的。
In former times, sheep were allowed to graze freely all year round, even in winter. This had disastrous effects when the climate became cooler. The interaction of natural forces: water, wind, fire and ice, as well as the encroachment of men and animals has, in the course of time, disturbed the layer of surface vegetation. When destroyed, a chain reaction of soil erosion begins which is difficult to stop. This shows how hard the struggle for survival has been in Iceland. The sheep has been called one of the keys to survival in the country in the old times. The animals could survive on winter grazing, and the people fed themselves on their meat and milk and made warm clothes from the wool.
从前可以让羊一年到头自由放牧,冬天也一样。在气候开始变冷以后,这种方式带来灾难性后果。自然因素的相互作用,水,风,火和冰相互影响,加上人类和动物的侵蚀,随着时间推移,地表植被层遭到破坏。一旦破坏形成,水土流失引起连锁反应,再难停止。这说明在冰岛活下去是多么不易。过去人们把羊看作是整个国家能否存在的核心。羊群能靠冬季牧草存活,人们则靠羊获得肉食,奶产品并通过羊毛来制衣保暖。
Since the last decades of the 20th century, steps have been taken to fight erosion by reforestation, reseeding and other programmes to protect sensitive areas from overuse by men and animals. Government regulation now prohibits unsustainable use of land. One of these steps has been to reduce the number of sheep so now there are 475,000 adult sheep in the country or 1,100,000, including the summer lambs.
自从20世纪后半期,为防止水土流失采取很多措施,比如植树造林,补种和其他项目来保护脆弱环境,不允许人们和牲畜滥用土地。现在政府法规禁止对土地的不可持续利用行为。这些措施之一就是减少羊群数量,目前全国有475.00头羊,如果算上夏季羔羊,共计110万头。
Lambing Time
产羔时间
The mating season is in December. The farmer registers the individual matings, and their dates. So when the lambing season starts, he can look into his book to see who their father is and on which dates his lambs are due. It’s important to know the date of delivery so that he can keep the mother indoors when she gives birth and to be able to shelter the newborns on their first days. Each farmer has a special earmark, cut into one of the lamb’s ears soon after its birth.
配种季节是在12月份。农民登记个体交配以及交配日期。这样当产羔季节开始,农民查看登记册,就知道是哪头公羊的崽,以及什么时候下羊羔。知道下羔时间很重要,这样农民会让母羊呆在圈里生产,在羊羔出生后的时间里进行照料。每个农民都有特有的耳朵标记,在羊羔出生后烙在其中一只耳朵上。
This traditional book-keeping method would make it easy for farmers to provide a genealogical tree of the meat you are purchasing! Today, the lambs are also tagged with modern plastic eartags.
传统手册就是方便农民有办法提供肉类的谱系,来供应消费者。现在羊羔也开始用现代塑料耳环做标记。
Nowhere else in the world are sheep bred by this method because in most countries the sheep simply have their lambs outdoors and no one knows anything about their genealogy.
世界上没有其他地方用这种方法养羊,因为大多数国家,羊都是在户外生产,人们不了解它们的来龙去脉。
The lambs are born in May and stay with their mothers all summer long. After the first few days indoors, they graze on grass fields on the farm for 3–4 weeks. Then they are sent out to graze the hills and mountain pastures all over the country, running free until the middle of September, feeding on the rich and nourishing vegetation. During the intervening time, the farmer harvests the hay to feed his sheep during the winter. Only about 1% of Iceland is cultivated. This means that most of the grass and plants the sheep feed on is wild.
羊羔在五月降生,整个夏天都和母羊一起。刚出生后呆在室内,然后在农场放牧3到4个星期。接下来赶到山坡或遍布全国的山区牧场吃草,一直自由放牧到9月中旬,这期间啃食营养丰富的植被。与此同时,农民收割牧草在冬季喂羊。冰岛只有百分之一的土地得到开发,说明羊吃的草和植物绝大部分是纯天然的。
The Réttir (Round-up)
圈羊
Farmers gather their flocks in the autumn. Systematically, they round up the sheep all over the country. There is practically no place in the wilderness of the highlands of Iceland where sheep cannot be found during the summer—except maybe on the glaciers. The round-up is conducted on horseback or on foot with the assistance of sheepdogs. The entire process may take up to a week and, during this time, participants stay overnight in mountain huts, where they pen in the sheep they have gathered so far, then hang up their damp clothes, uncork their hip flasks and swap stories and songs.
农民在秋天齐聚羊群。这些人有条不紊地把全国范围内的羊圈到一起。事实上整个夏季羊很难在冰岛高原的旷野里羊藏身—除非躲到冰川里。在牧羊犬的协助下,人们骑马或者走路进行圈羊活动。整个活动最多需要一周时间,活动期间,赶羊人在高原小屋里过夜,他们把已经找到的羊看好,接着晾晒湿衣服,把酒壶的塞子拔去,高兴地讲故事唱歌。
When the search is over and all the sheep are accounted for, the fat frisky lambs, ewes and rams are herded down to the lowlands and into a corral called a ‘réttir’, where they are identified by their earmarks and sorted into the correct pens, belonging to individual farms.
找羊活动一结束,所有羊都数清,肥美活蹦乱跳的小羊,母羊和公羊被成群赶到平原,赶到“圈羊场”的地方,在圈羊场通过耳朵上的印记辨别,被分好赶进分属于各个农场的圈里。
The réttir is a popular event across the country and most Icelanders like to take part in it, be they bureaucrats or bankers, school-children or teachers, sailors or seamstresses. Some travel companies offer foreign travellers the opportunity to participate also.
赶羊节是风靡全岛的节日庆典,大部分冰岛人都喜欢参与,其中不乏官僚和银行家,学生或者教师,水手和裁缝都加入进来。一些旅行社也会安排外国游客参加活动。
After the sheep have been herded into the correct pens they are divided up. Those destined for the slaughterhouse are removed from the flock. Those destined to live graze on fields on or near the farm, until November, when they are housed for the winter .
把羊赶到指定的羊圈后就进行分类。要去屠宰场的羊从羊群里挪出来。留下活命的羊在农场附近草地吃草直到11月份,冬天一到就赶到圈里。
Sheep used to be sheared before they were released to roam the pastures. Nowadays, most farmers shear them in winter when they are indoors, as this wool fetches a higher price.
过去,经常羊被放到牧场迁徙前,要剪好羊毛。现在大部分农民利用冬天室内时间剪羊毛,这时候羊毛能卖价更高。
A Valuable Resource
优质资源
Wool was one of the country’s most important exports during the Middle Ages (along with dried fish, known as stock fish). It became the basis of a valuable export industry again in the 20th
在中世纪时羊毛是这个国家最重要的出口产品之一(还有干鱼,以鱼类资源著称)。20世纪羊毛又成为优质出口工业的基础。
The fleece of the Icelandic sheep, which varies in colour from white through grey and browns to near black, is made up of two layers. The inner layer of short, fine fibres, called ‘thel’ was used for knitting delicate laces, underwear and baby clothes while the coarser, longer, outer fibres, called ‘tog’ were used for warm and water resistant winter garments. Today the soft spun ‘lopi wool’ is used in traditionally patterned hand knitted sweaters, the most popular souvenirs from Iceland.
冰岛羊毛,颜色的变化,从白色到灰色,再到褐色直到黑色,由两层组成。里面一层,纤维短小精细,称作“歇尔”,用来编织精致的花边,内衣和婴儿服,而粗糙,较长的外层纤维,称为“托格”,用来编织保暖防水的冬季衣服。现在 轻纺“毛线”用来编织传统风格的手工毛衣,在全岛最受欢迎的旅游纪念品商店有售。
-AMB


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