babaà sheep: la trashumancia

Trashumancia is the seasonal movement of people with their livestock between fixed summer and winter pastures.

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trashumancia-babaa-sheep-riding-horses

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Two weeks ago we were invited to participate in a 10km walk in Siruela (Extremadura)  taking part of the celebrations of this very old and very important tradition. The whole village seemed to be there , we all had breakfast together in the nearby village of Tamurejo. Beautiful local pastries were offered while women were singing traditional songs. We then got to the beautiful road or Cañada Real (Royal Cañada) where 1000 Spanish Merino Sheep were waiting and we were honoured to walked behind them in the most wonderful environment. There are 9 main Cañadas Reales in Spain totalling 125.000 km (see map) so this little walk was really only just a celebration.

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There is a lot we would love to write about this tradition that can be traced in Spain back to the Middle Ages but we are sharing links, more beautifully written I am sure, we highly recommend them:

  • Learn more about Cañadas Reales and La Mesta here  – how Merino sheep were so important for the Spain economy and political power back in the 15th century
  • Read more about Trashumancia in Spain here and more in detail here
  • Enjoy this video by Sergio Oliver Gómez of a group of young people that participated for a few days in the Trashumancia with a shepherd and his beautiful flock.

These sheep that you see all over Spain are the ones that provide our beautiful pure Spanish wool. Many of you see bits of “nature” in your babaà jumpers when you get them. Now you know where it comes from! We are very proud to support this traditional local industry so important for the biodiversity and the environment.

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To finish we would like to share with you a traditional Trashumancia Spanish song:

 

Ya se van los pastores

Ya se van los pastores

a la Extremadura

ya se queda la sierra

triste y oscura

Ya se van los pastores

ya se van marchado

mas de cuatro zagalas quedan llorando

Ya se van los pastores

hacia la majada

ya se queda la sierra

triste y callada.

And to thank Eugenia Bugallal from Unique-Spain for sharing some information with us.

 

 

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