NFU Mutual Smallholding Insurance

Author Topic: Bad week! Dead lamb, bloat, fly strike ????  (Read 1058 times)


  • Joined Apr 2018
Bad week! Dead lamb, bloat, fly strike ????
« on: May 08, 2018, 08:00:42 pm »
So lambing was going swimmingly, they kept popping out on their own in the paddock when nobody was looking.

Down to the last two and we lost a lamb. Unfortunately lamb came with head first and got stuck in the night. When she was found lamb was already dead. It’s our first lamb casualty so we feel terrible.
Mum is doing fine on her own though. She was lame but came sound again as soon as lamb was out. (We had trimmed and checked her feet but didn’t want to interfere to much as she was so close to being due)

Next was the fly strike. One of the ewes was spotted flat out with flies on her. THANKFULLY it was VERY early on and just on her tail so that wasn’t too traumatic.
Although her lamb seems to have slightly contracted tendons in the front legs so is tottering as if on stilettos. Have seen mixed reviews about splinting or just turning out in the field.

Today was the dead ewe. All seemed fine yesterday but today she was found slumped in the field, foam pouring out of her nose & some blood round her mouth.
First time we’ve had a dead sheep with no explanation. Again feel terrible. Especially since she’s left a little lamb which we’re monitoring closely. It’s semi-paired up with another lamb whose mum is ok with her as long as she doesn’t suckle and she’s taking the bottle ok. 
Husband suspects the ewe died of bloat as he said it looks a lot like what he saw when his sheep France died of bloat.
They had some fresh grass on Friday and obviously they’ve all been a bit stressed with the dramatic heat wave.
How do you spot it in sheep? They’ve all got their fleece still, they’re all a bit tubby after lambing and they’re all bloody panting in the heat!!

Then second fly strike spotted .... she’d had it before, spotted a fly stuck in her fleece so knew straight away, treated and ok now.

I’m not sure I’m cut out for this shepherdess malarkey!!
Voss Electric Fence


  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Barry, Angus, Scotland
    • The Accidental Smallholder
Re: Bad week! Dead lamb, bloat, fly strike ????
« Reply #1 on: May 09, 2018, 07:48:20 am »
There are times when none of us are sure we're cut out for this malarkey. Sorry to hear about your troubles - sounds like you've had your three strikes.

Hope all goes better now and wee orphan lamb does OK.


  • Joined Jan 2011
  • Argyll
Re: Bad week! Dead lamb, bloat, fly strike ????
« Reply #2 on: May 09, 2018, 12:02:46 pm »
Sudden death with blood around mouth , I would be guessing Pneumonia . Hope you have now treated all your ewes for  blowflys ?


  • Joined Dec 2015
  • North coast of Scotland
Re: Bad week! Dead lamb, bloat, fly strike ????
« Reply #3 on: May 09, 2018, 02:03:24 pm »
Sorry to hear you've had a tough week  :hug: :hug: :hug:  In the last 7 days I've had (1) husband partially ruptured his Achilles tendon helping me catch a ewe and is now in plaster and on crutches, (2) husband's mother died on Saturday (not unexpected, she was 91, but still sad), (3) lamb born dead after it presented itself hind legs first and drowned in the birth fluids, (4) lamb arriving with one leg back that had got so firmly wedged against the pelvis that it took my very experienced neighbour half an hour to find a way to unwedge him (thankfully he's fine) and (5) my holiday cottage guests calling at 10pm to say the shower was backing up and they'd just flooded the bathroom.  3, 4 and 5 all happened between 4pm and midnight yesterday, so I'm hoping today is going to be quieter!

Tim W

  • Joined Aug 2013
Re: Bad week! Dead lamb, bloat, fly strike ????
« Reply #4 on: May 13, 2018, 07:33:02 am »
If it makes you feel any better (or at least not alone in tragedy) ----yesterday afternoon i was called to pick up a dead lamb in front of  a landlords house ---i picked it up but on the way out watched the lambs playing , chasing each other around the field one overstepped his luck and bounced straight into the river!
So i jumped the fence and grabbed the crook to catch it with but by the time i got there mum had decided to help by jumping in too....she managed to get herself stuck under a willow root on the river bank so i had to first drag her out before rescuing the lamb
I managed to do all of this but this was too exciting for the rams on the opposite bank and they all crowded along the bank to watch/cheer etc ---there are 52 rams in the field and 5 or 6 managed to get pushed into the river . In the ensuing chaos they managed to trample and drown one of their number
Dragging a dead ram out of a river put my back out so now i have to go see the osteopath

Sometimes i wonder why i bother 


  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
Re: Bad week! Dead lamb, bloat, fly strike ????
« Reply #5 on: May 13, 2018, 08:19:40 am »
Very, very gentle :hug:
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


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