Shears are a tool used primarily to shear sheep and mine a few types of blocks.
Novice-level Shepherd villagers have a 40% chance to sell shears for 2 emeralds in Java Edition, and the trade is always offered in Bedrock Edition.
Shears can be found in 12.3% of village shepherd chests in groups of 1.
Shears were first introduced to Minecraft in a cryptic message posted by Jeb on Twitter. “Jojagog jojabobbobaror popå soshohearorsos nonu”, he wrote. Through the magic of speaking Swedish and deleting a load of useless letters, it can be decoded as “I’m working on shears now”. They were originally going to be a way to defuse TNT, but that was scrapped and instead they were introduced in [Beta] version 1.7 as a way to obtain wool from far-too-fluffy sheep without hurting them in the process. Hooray! Unless you hate sheep. In which case, wow. Take a long hard look at yourself.
||— Duncan Geere
Despite using iron in its crafting recipe, it cannot be smelted into iron nuggets.
Shears are the most efficient way to get wool from sheep, producing 1–3 wool blocks (as opposed to killing a sheep, which produces only 1 wool block).
Shears can also be used to harvest cobweb, leaves, tall grass, seagrass, ferns (both normal and 2-high), dead bushes and vines. Also, leaves harvested by shears do not decay when placed.
Shearing a mooshroom drops 5 mushrooms of the same color, and turns it into a normal cow.
Shearing a tripwire connected to tripwire hooks does not trigger them.
Shearing a pumpkin turns it into a carved pumpkin after dropping 4 pumpkin seeds.
Shearing a snow golem removes its pumpkin, without dropping the pumpkin.
Shearing either a bee nest or beehive at honey level 5 drops 3 honeycombs. [upcoming: JE 1.15 & BE 1.14.0]
Harvesting a melon block with shears always drop 9 melons.[Bedrock Edition only]
Speed and durability
||This section needs more information.|
Information requested: missing pumpkin
The following table shows information about items on which shears can be used. Colors indicate what gets dropped when the block is broken:
- White: The original block.
- Blue: The Block's normal drop (i.e. string, sticks, seeds, sapling, apple).
- Red: Nothing.
- ↑ Breaking cobwebs with a sword is as fast as breaking with shears, and yields string. This costs double durability.
- ↑ Using shears won't trigger a redstone pulse.
Shears can receive the following enchantments via an anvil.
In-game description ||
Actual requirements (if different) ||Availability||
Xbox points earned ||
Trophy type (PS) |
||Have a Shearful Day||Use Shears to obtain wool from a sheep.||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||15G||Bronze|
|Java Edition Beta|
|June 3, 2011||Shears were first mentioned by Jeb on Twitter. The tweet revealing Jeb's work on shears was written in Swedish (Jag jobbar på shears nu), which translates to "I'm working on shears now".|
|June 7, 2011||Jeb tweets about how shears were originally planned as a way to defuse TNT, but he dropped this shortly after deciding TNT would detonate only with redstone or fire.|
|1.7|| Shears have been introduced into the game.
|Before Beta 1.7, sheep would drop 1-3 wool blocks at most when hit, but shears can harvest up to 4 wool blocks per sheep.|
|1.8||Pre-release||Shears can now be used to harvest a fern, vines and grass.|
|1.0.0||?||Shears now harvest red mushrooms from a mooshroom and turn it back into a normal cow.|
|1.1||11w49a||Sheep now drop only 1-3 wool blocks when sheared, but they can also regrow their wool by eating grass, which is part of a plan to have animals stay in the game longer.|
|1.2.1||12w06a||Shears can now be used to harvest dead bushes.|
|1.3.1||12w21a||Shears can now be bought from farmer villagers for 3 emeralds each.|
|12w22a||Shears can now be used to break tripwire string and not set it off.|
|1.4.2||12w38a||Added a sound when using shears on sheep.|
|1.4.6||12w50a||Shears can now be enchanted.|
|1.8||14w02a||Trading has now been changed: Shepherd villagers now sell shears for 3–4 emeralds each.
|Farmers no longer trade shears.|
|pre1||Shears now lose durability when breaking wool blocks. In previous versions, shears would take durability damage only when destroyed or when breaking tall grass or leaves, the damage remaining the same for all other blocks.|
|1.9||15w34a||Shears may now be used in a crafting grid to zoom in maps.|
|15w45a||Shears no longer zoom in maps.|
|15w47b||Shears can now no longer be enchanted with Silk Touch.
|Shears now lose durability when used to break any block (formerly lost durability only from leaves, web, grass, vines, tripwire and wool).|
|15w47c||Shears now harvest cobweb without requiring Silk Touch.|
|15w49a||Snow golems' pumpkin can now be removed with shears.|
|1.13||17w47a||When shears are used on an un-carved pumpkin, it now turns into a carved pumpkin and drops 4 pumpkin seeds.
|Prior to The Flattening, this item's numeral ID was 359.|
|1.14||18w43a||Shears placed in a dispenser can now shear sheep.
| The texture of shears has now been changed.|
|Upcoming Java Edition|
|1.15||19w34a||Shears can now be used on bee nests and beehives to harvest honeycomb.|
|Pocket Edition Alpha|
|0.2.0|| Added shears to survival mode.|
|0.8.0||build 3||Added shears to creative mode.|
|0.9.0||build 1||Shears can now be used to transform mooshrooms into cows.|
|0.12.1||build 3||Shearing a snow golem now removes its pumpkin.
|Shears can now be enchanted in an anvil.|
|0.13.0||build 1||Shears can now be used to break tripwire string without triggering it.|
|0.15.0||build 1||Shears now lose durability when used to break any block.|
|1.0.4||alpha 188.8.131.52||Shears can now be bought from shepherd villagers.|
|1.1.0||alpha 184.108.40.206||Breaking a melon block with shears now always drop 9 melons.|
|1.4.0||beta 220.127.116.11||Shears can now be used to turn un-carved pumpkins into carved pumpkin and spit out 4 pumpkin seeds.|
|?||Shears now harvest cobweb without requiring Silk Touch.|
|1.10.0||beta 18.104.22.168||Shears placed in a dispenser can now shear sheep.
| The texture of shears has now been changed.|
|1.11.0||beta 22.214.171.124||Shears can now be found in village shepherd houses.|
|beta 126.96.36.199||Shears sold by shepherd villagers will now cost only 2 emeralds.|
|Upcoming Bedrock Edition|
|1.14.0||beta 188.8.131.52||Shears can now be used on bee nests and beehives to harvest honeycomb.|
|Legacy Console Edition|
|TU3||CU1||1.0||Patch 1|| Added shears.|
|TU69||1.76||Shears can now be used to turn regular pumpkins into carved pumpkins. It drops only one piece of pumpkin seeds, unlike Java and Pocket editions.|
|PlayStation 4 Edition|
|1.90|| The texture of shears has now been changed.
|Shears placed in a dispenser can now shear sheep.|
|New Nintendo 3DS Edition|
|0.1.0|| Added shears.|
Issues relating to "Shears" are maintained on the bug tracker. Report issues there.