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Author Topic: When I wean my sheep  (Read 2978 times)

Bionic

  • Joined Dec 2010
  • Talley, Carmarthenshire
When I wean my sheep
« on: June 12, 2014, 05:13:09 pm »
I will be weaning the lambs mid to late July.
Is it ok to put all the lambs in with the ram?
I was going to take them away from their mums, who will only be the other side of the fence, and put them with the ram. After a couple of weeks I would put the ewe lambs back with their mums and leave all rams together.
 
Life is like a bowl of cherries, mostly yummy but some dodgy bits
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Foobar

  • Joined Mar 2012
  • South Wales
Re: When I wean my sheep
« Reply #1 on: June 12, 2014, 05:34:19 pm »
Yes :)

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • Wester Gladstone Hebridean Sheep
Re: When I wean my sheep
« Reply #2 on: June 12, 2014, 05:39:15 pm »
Any reason why you're weaning them Bionic?  The dams will wean them themselves at about 5 months, which still leaves time for them to get back to full condition by tupping time.
I do take out the tup and wether lambs at 4 months, because they are getting quite randy with their sisters and mums by then, but ewe lambs I leave with their mums.

I wouldn't put the ewe lambs in with the tups, even my primitives, but others won't agree  :D
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Me

  • Joined Feb 2014
  • Wild West
Re: When I wean my sheep
« Reply #3 on: June 12, 2014, 05:42:13 pm »
It depends what suits, early weaning can make sense down (even) to 8 weeks but 10 is the accepted minimum. For eg. we have little pasture that most people would call pasture and have just weaned at 10 to 12 weeks so lambies can stay on it and finish. Leave the ewes chewin' twigs for the rest of the summer

Ladygrey

  • Joined Jun 2012
  • Basingstoke
Re: When I wean my sheep
« Reply #4 on: June 12, 2014, 05:44:00 pm »
I would not put my lambs in with the tups just because mine can be rough I suppose

I wouldnt wean in July, I wean off the lambs in late august and then the ram lambs can go in with the tups but ewe lambs will be kept away untill ewes are dry, then the ewe lambs that can be tupped as ewe lambs go back in with the ewes mid-end of sept for move onto good grazing and the smaller ewe lambs move to dairy pasture with anything that needs overwintering

Bionic

  • Joined Dec 2010
  • Talley, Carmarthenshire
Re: When I wean my sheep
« Reply #5 on: June 12, 2014, 07:13:20 pm »
At the end of July my oldest lambs will be 18 weeks so I thought that would be the right time to move them round. Really, other than the fact that the tup lambs need to be moved away from the females, I guess there is no reason why I can't leave the ewe lambs in with their mums.
My ram is good with the lambs, so I'm not worried about the ram lambs going in with him.
Ewes condition for tupping isn't a problem because I'm not lambing next year.
So decision made. Ram lambs at 18 weeks will go in with the ram, Ewes lambs will stay with their mums.
thanks everyone
Life is like a bowl of cherries, mostly yummy but some dodgy bits

Me

  • Joined Feb 2014
  • Wild West
Re: When I wean my sheep
« Reply #6 on: June 21, 2014, 01:27:45 pm »
Just got emailed this:

Eblex suggests weaning lambs aged over eight weeks when they are growing at a rate less than 200g a day. According to the levy board, lambs over eight weeks old have a higher energy intake from grass than from milk, leading to increased competition between ewes and lambs for good quality grazing. The advice reminds farmers that lambs should be weaned on familiar pasture, out of sight and sound of the ewes, before being moved to pasture with a low parasite burden or onto a forage crop.

Marches Farmer

  • Joined Dec 2012
  • Herefordshire
Re: When I wean my sheep
« Reply #7 on: June 21, 2014, 02:27:47 pm »
I'm with Eblex on that, except that we have lots of good grazing and keeping the lambs with the ewes for 16 weeks makes handling much easier.  We try and move the ewe lambs to haymaking aftermath grazing after three days, once they're used to being without Mum.  The very best of the ram lambs will stay to be grown on for breeding and the rest either destined for the freezer or sold as stores.

novicesmallholder

  • Joined Oct 2009
  • Worcestershire
Re: When I wean my sheep
« Reply #8 on: June 21, 2014, 03:03:11 pm »
Just weaned our boys at 15 weeks, and are in with the tups and shearling boys, just getting on  with it, and older boys are good with the young ones.

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
Re: When I wean my sheep
« Reply #9 on: June 21, 2014, 09:05:15 pm »
Eblex' advice assumes that the pasture is under pressure, and makes sense in that scenario.

If you have plenty of grass, I'd have thought that the check from weaning would be best avoided.  Most people reckon that a lamb will stand still for two weeks when it's weaned. :o   2 weeks is a long time if you were hoping to get it away at 12-14 weeks! 

If grass is under pressure, I'd be inclined to think about speaning twins earlier, perhaps, as they'll take longer to fatten anyway, and try to run the singles on with their mothers until they're ready to go - no check, away soonest ;)

I'm talking lambs that will finish in one season, of course.  A completely different equation with lambs that take a year or more.
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Live in a cohousing community with small farm for our own use.  Dairy cow, beef cattle, pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing

Bionic

  • Joined Dec 2010
  • Talley, Carmarthenshire
Re: When I wean my sheep
« Reply #10 on: June 22, 2014, 08:07:13 am »
Thanks Sally. As usual, a lot go good advice.  :thumbsup:
Life is like a bowl of cherries, mostly yummy but some dodgy bits

 

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