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Author Topic: Drying off ewes - no feed??  (Read 334 times)


  • Joined Aug 2018
Drying off ewes - no feed??
« on: July 30, 2020, 05:26:50 pm »
Just a quick question. I’ve separated some ewes and lambs today and brought the ewes onto hardstanding for an overnighter in the lambing shed as I know I have read about doing this, and been told about it on here, to lessen chances of mastitis. Do I feed them at all? They have access to water obviously and I have chucked a bit of straw down for bedding. I remember someone saying you can just feed them straw, and did put some in a pile, but it is pretty old and crappy and I doubt they’ll eat it. Should I put a little bit of last year’s hay in for them till I turn them out tomorrow? Or just leave them with nothing??

Apologies as I know this has been covered probably many times but my search skills always seem to be lacking...


  • Joined Apr 2012
Re: Drying off ewes - no feed??
« Reply #1 on: July 30, 2020, 05:54:55 pm »
I just give mine some hay at each end of the day and keep them in until their udders have slackened off a bit. Got a couple in at the moment they’ve been in about a week now. They will probably go back out at the weekend.


  • Joined Jul 2014
Re: Drying off ewes - no feed??
« Reply #2 on: July 30, 2020, 08:44:55 pm »
Mine get hay or poor grass and water until the udders start to go down then I reintroduce better grass.  By 10 days they can rejoin the other sheep but not their lambs.


  • Joined Aug 2018
Re: Drying off ewes - no feed??
« Reply #3 on: August 04, 2020, 04:35:54 pm »
Well the ewes went back out the following day. I know I’ve read somewhere about doing it for 24 hours to give drying off a kick start. Due to inexperience this was our third lot of weaning and definitely the worse so won’t be doing it again. Just hard as at this time of year there’s no field particularly bad, and due to the tough winter we had I don’t want to risk keeping one bad as I need them all good for when winter comes again.
The last lot I weaned the ewes were kept on the field they’d been on with the lambs. I think at the age they are the chances of mastitis are low anyway, and certainly on checking their udders last week they were visibly going down and felt slacker as well.


  • Joined Feb 2017
  • Carmarthenshire
Re: Drying off ewes - no feed??
« Reply #4 on: August 05, 2020, 06:07:02 am »
The last lot I weaned the ewes were kept on the field they’d been on with the lambs.

Thats how I do it too and I've never had problems with mastitus at weaning!

Bramham Wiltshire Horns

  • Joined Oct 2014
  • leeds
  • Bramham flock Wiltshire Horns
Re: Drying off ewes - no feed??
« Reply #5 on: August 11, 2020, 04:36:29 pm »
it all a learning curve

i start to wean at 4 months as i am not in a rush to push them and i sell direct to the customer, by then most have weaned , or started to and can noticably see that the udders are slackening off, my averages are 39.5kg this year but they havent had creep just grass and Milk. 
i take the tups off and leave mums with the Gimmers and so that they slowly wean and i have never had a case of Mastitus, i will give the tups a little bit of grub for the next week as they can go backwards a little bit with the stress of weaning. in fact this year they wasnt bothered
i have one ewe that has weaned, no udder and pretty much back in condition, she's certainly a keeper,

this works for me and my set up it maynot wrk for everyone


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