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Author Topic: Age/ weight to work a ram lamb??  (Read 2395 times)

Hillview Farm

  • Joined Dec 2012
  • Surrey
  • Proud owner of sheep and Llamas!
Age/ weight to work a ram lamb??
« on: July 31, 2014, 06:14:58 pm »
Hello all,

I am planning on using a handful of ram lambs to cover my crossbred ewes so when I sell them as shearlings I could say they are proven ( if they work of course)

But it's just suddenly hit me, what age or weight does a ram lamb need to be in order to cover a small number of ewes each. I've heard stories of three month olds covering a ewe but I'm in need of them doing five each. They are charollais and born march this year!
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SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
Re: Age/ weight to work a ram lamb??
« Reply #1 on: July 31, 2014, 07:14:18 pm »
When do you tup?

I used an April-born Shetland x Charollais tup lamb last year, and although he seemed active, judging by results he started working for real in November.  Of course, that could've been the ewes not being ready ;)

The normal advice for using a first-year tup or ewe lamb is that they should be 60% of their mature weight.  According to Eblex, a healthy tup lamb at 60% mature weight could reach puberty at four to six months. link to their booklet on producing rams - section on producing ram lambs at page 16.
Don't listen to the money men - they know the price of everything and the value of nothing

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

Hillview Farm

  • Joined Dec 2012
  • Surrey
  • Proud owner of sheep and Llamas!
Re: Age/ weight to work a ram lamb??
« Reply #2 on: July 31, 2014, 07:29:36 pm »
DOH! would help if I had said when!! October the first week. we shall see!

Thank you for the link will read after dinner :)

shep53

  • Joined Jan 2011
  • Argyll
Re: Age/ weight to work a ram lamb??
« Reply #3 on: July 31, 2014, 08:21:16 pm »
 60% of mature bodyweight is the standard for ram lambs  covering  40 or more ewes so for only 5 I wouldn't be to worried , your bigger problem is that as you want to sell next year you need to keep them growing with no set backs and any period of reduced food consumption can affect them , you  are trying to compete with shearling breeders who don't use them as lambs and  keep them growing all the time .   

Hillview Farm

  • Joined Dec 2012
  • Surrey
  • Proud owner of sheep and Llamas!
Re: Age/ weight to work a ram lamb??
« Reply #4 on: July 31, 2014, 08:39:21 pm »
Ah I have a plan for that!! we are sponging in two groups all together, the pedigree ewes to a ped ram and then my crossbred ewes to the ram lambs. Once they have been covered I can take the little lads away and they can all run together and the ped ram can get any return ewes!

do you think that would work?

shep53

  • Joined Jan 2011
  • Argyll
Re: Age/ weight to work a ram lamb??
« Reply #5 on: July 31, 2014, 09:12:34 pm »
Think so , still going to be some weight/condition loss as they work and then have to  spend a day or two  powering down ,  to be honest iv'e never asked if a ram was a proven worker and out of the hundreds ive bought non have not worked just 2or3 sub fertile due to bad feeding methods or once growth implants .  Are you hoping to sell in the auction system or privately ?

Hillview Farm

  • Joined Dec 2012
  • Surrey
  • Proud owner of sheep and Llamas!
Re: Age/ weight to work a ram lamb??
« Reply #6 on: July 31, 2014, 09:19:35 pm »
Privately  :)

shep53

  • Joined Jan 2011
  • Argyll
Re: Age/ weight to work a ram lamb??
« Reply #7 on: July 31, 2014, 09:33:58 pm »
Ok  slightly different then you can talk up any good points such as used as a lamb /never forced can see family etc   but remember size / condition at sale time is still the thing  most buyers see first .     Good luck and enjoy :thumbsup:

Hillview Farm

  • Joined Dec 2012
  • Surrey
  • Proud owner of sheep and Llamas!
Re: Age/ weight to work a ram lamb??
« Reply #8 on: July 31, 2014, 09:39:52 pm »
Thank you very much  :thumbsup: watch this space  :tired:

 

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