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Author Topic: Advice regarding weaning and separating ram lambs  (Read 4914 times)

Yeoman

  • Joined Oct 2010
  • South Northamptonshire
Advice regarding weaning and separating ram lambs
« on: July 30, 2013, 01:19:53 pm »
I have four Wiltshire horn lambs.  Two (intact) rams and two ewe lambs.  They range between 10 and 14 weeks old.


I'm getting ready to wean them but have a question about the best way to proceed.


Is it best to move the mums out and leave all four lambs together for another couple of weeks until they are weaned and then separate the ram lambs from the ewe lambs?  Does this risk the ram lambs tupping their sisters/half sisters?


The alternative is to separate them into three groups now.


Thoughts please?
Voss Electric Fence

ScotsGirl

  • Joined Dec 2009
  • Wiltshire
Re: Advice regarding weaning and separating ram lambs
« Reply #1 on: July 30, 2013, 01:24:47 pm »
I would just take mums away for two weeks then separate off rams by 16 weeks. I find 2 weeks away from mum is enough to dry up the milk and then I re-introduce. Mums make the biggest fuss but they don't let lambs feed when they return. Depends how much field space you have.

Hillview Farm

  • Joined Dec 2012
  • Surrey
  • Proud owner of sheep and Llamas!
Re: Advice regarding weaning and separating ram lambs
« Reply #2 on: July 30, 2013, 01:51:03 pm »
I weaned last week. I put the ewes and lambs into the barn. Separated the lambs from the ewes with hurdles. Everything had food and water but the lambs could still see mums, I ran the ewes back to the field 3 days later and the ewes don't seem fussed at all! The lambs only shout when there next meal is due!

SteveHants

  • Joined Aug 2011
Re: Advice regarding weaning and separating ram lambs
« Reply #3 on: July 30, 2013, 02:03:59 pm »
It is unlikely that the ram lambs will tup the ewe lambs at this stage. What I would do is wean them the other side of a fence from the ewes and then when they have calmed down, split the ram and ewe lambs. If the ewe lambs are to go back with the ewes, wait a few weeks.


I have tried weaning them a couple of fields away but find the ewes will suddenly jump fences/push under gates etc to get back to the lambs. However, they rarely go in the same field, just to where they can see them. Its as if they want to know the lambs are OK, but dont want them suckling anymore...

Yeoman

  • Joined Oct 2010
  • South Northamptonshire
Re: Advice regarding weaning and separating ram lambs
« Reply #4 on: July 31, 2013, 02:08:41 pm »
Thank you all.


So I needn't worry about the rams doing any "extracurricular activity" for a few weeks yet.  At what age do they NEED to be separated?


Or does it depend more on the time of year?




SteveHants

  • Joined Aug 2011
Re: Advice regarding weaning and separating ram lambs
« Reply #5 on: July 31, 2013, 03:00:41 pm »
Depends on the time of year, maturity and to some extent breed of the ram.


If the ram has attained a good weight, coming into the autumn he is likely to start working. Maternal breeds seem to mature sexually especially early, Lleyns being a prime example of this.

Simon O

  • Joined Mar 2010
  • Bonkle
Re: Advice regarding weaning and separating ram lambs
« Reply #6 on: August 01, 2013, 09:47:47 am »
Steve weaning the lambs into the adjacent field is the best piece of time saving advice I have had for a while. 2 of us spent some hours moving lambs to furthest paddock (as this was what I had read was best) last weekend only to see them break out and get back to the track beside their mums. 15 minutes spent last night moving lambs next door and they are making plenty of noise but seem happy either side of the fence. Thanks!

Bionic

  • Joined Dec 2010
  • Talley, Carmarthenshire
Re: Advice regarding weaning and separating ram lambs
« Reply #7 on: August 01, 2013, 10:22:13 am »
Simon,
I don't have much land so not much choice either. Yesterday I moved mine to the next door field, seperated by stock fencing. Agree, plenty of noise but other than that all seems to be ok. Lambs are eating and drinking fine.
Life is like a bowl of cherries, mostly yummy but some dodgy bits

SteveHants

  • Joined Aug 2011
Re: Advice regarding weaning and separating ram lambs
« Reply #8 on: August 01, 2013, 10:53:21 pm »
Steve weaning the lambs into the adjacent field is the best piece of time saving advice I have had for a while. 2 of us spent some hours moving lambs to furthest paddock (as this was what I had read was best) last weekend only to see them break out and get back to the track beside their mums. 15 minutes spent last night moving lambs next door and they are making plenty of noise but seem happy either side of the fence. Thanks!


Their mothers dont want 'em sucking at that age, but they do want to see 'em... ;)


Cutting the apron strings and all that.

Bionic

  • Joined Dec 2010
  • Talley, Carmarthenshire
Re: Advice regarding weaning and separating ram lambs
« Reply #9 on: August 02, 2013, 09:57:35 am »
Mine went in seperate fields on Wed and already its much quieter this morning. Phew, thats a relief  ;D
Life is like a bowl of cherries, mostly yummy but some dodgy bits

devonlad

  • Joined Nov 2012
  • Nr Crediton in Devon
Re: Advice regarding weaning and separating ram lambs
« Reply #10 on: August 03, 2013, 06:09:36 pm »
we took oura away abour 3 weeks ago and were hoping to put the ewe lambs back after two weeks, just because we didnt have enough grass for all the lambs. however 2of the ewes let the lambs back on and we had to seperate them again. bit of a pain but i guess ewes dry up at different rates. this year is the first time we've done it in adjacent fields as we have always tried to put more distance between them. it seemed to have actually worked really well. initially obviously some calling and then them lying next to each other through the fence. we do wonder whether though this has had anything to do with the ewes not drying up as quickly ??

 

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