Critterhaven is located in Pueblo, Colorado. My parents purchased the farm when I was 2 years old, and I purchased it from them in 1998 after an absence of 26 years. Pueblo has excruciatingly hot summers (100 °F and higher) and bitter cold winters (–15 °F and lower). After miller moth season in the spring, the air fills with mosquitoes, deer flies, and horse flies. I prefer to not be outside during Pueblo's summer days. Pueblo also is a very arid region, with less than 12 in. of precipitation annually.
Critterhaven is a hobby farm (which is another way of saying that I rarely make a profit at any of my farm activities). I try to practice sustainable agriculture and self-sufficiency, growing and preserving all of my own food (animals, vegetables, wine, beer—the staples of life!).
My farm is barely 8 acres, only 2 of which are irrigated for pasture. From 1998 to 2015, I raised Barbados Blackbelly sheep. Health issues prevent me from continuing to work with sheep although I remain active and involved with the breed (see below). Although the Livestock Conservancy reports that this breed is recovering from near extinction, in the U.S. the breed remains very rare. There are fewer than 900 of these sheep here and they are a long way from being "recovered."
I also raise Australorp and Americauna chickens and have a couple of house dogs and lots and lots of cats. Cats are truly my passion.
Barbados Blackbelly sheep became my passion in 1998 when I fell in love with their beauty and then realized how very few true Barbados Blackbelly sheep remain in the U.S. I have made it my mission to
To this end, I've accomplished the following tasks: