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Author Topic: Feeding Ewes 5 weeks before lambing.  (Read 1598 times)

thesuffolksmallholding

  • Joined Jan 2017
Feeding Ewes 5 weeks before lambing.
« on: February 27, 2018, 10:10:40 am »
I have a group of ewes due to lamb start of April and I am not 100% certain if I'm getting the feeding right.
They are all Suffolk mules covered by a Suffolk ram and are scanned as twins.
I was going to start feeding them 200g and then step up by 200g each week until they are on 1kg (over two feeds) a week before lambing. They have a fair bit of grass but no hay (haven't needed it as had enough grass to keep condition). They are all around condition score 3.
I was going to chuck a lifeline bucket out there as well so they can take what they want from that, but my main worry is overfeeding not underfeeding as don't want gigantic lambs as they are all first timers.

Thanks in advance!

twizzel

  • Joined Apr 2012
Re: Feeding Ewes 5 weeks before lambing.
« Reply #1 on: February 27, 2018, 10:51:57 am »
My scanned twins start at 300g/day 4 weeks out then up to 500g/day 2 weeks until lambing. They have lifeline buckets from 6 weeks. I think if I gave them a kilo of cake a day they would have huge lambs. They are pure and crossbred lleyn, the pures are first time lambers and the crossbred are 2nd. They’ve been in since 6 weeks away from lambing due to the wet ground. It’s trial and error finding a feeding plan to suit your system but this worked quite well for me last year.

shep53

  • Joined Jan 2011
  • Dumfries & Galloway
Re: Feeding Ewes 5 weeks before lambing.
« Reply #2 on: February 27, 2018, 12:49:43 pm »
Your definitely going to overfeed them as 1st timers in lamb to Suffolk , even if they were experienced your still pushing hard . They are in good condition so the grass is good and remember it will only get better . You dismiss the lifeline yet it could provide the equal of 200gm of concs per day .  Hard for someone not seeing your sheep and grass   but from your description  I personally would be think max circa  5-600 gms per day  18% conc maybe

Me

  • Joined Feb 2014
  • Wild West
Re: Feeding Ewes 5 weeks before lambing.
« Reply #3 on: February 27, 2018, 01:28:34 pm »
My pedigrees starting April 1st are on haylage. I intend to add a lick due to the snow etc. Zero grass under foot. You cannot reliably extrapolate, if anything with the grass you may have the challenge will be oversized lambs. But who can say without seeing the sheep and the farm.

Sbom

  • Joined Jul 2012
  • Staffordshire
Re: Feeding Ewes 5 weeks before lambing.
« Reply #4 on: February 27, 2018, 02:40:01 pm »
My Romney’s have grass and licks. No concentrate at all and the lambs are always a good size, even the multiples.
My Zwarbs have been on hay and concentrate for ages and still aren’t as fit as I’d like.

As Me suggested , there are many variables.

Marches Farmer

  • Joined Dec 2012
  • Herefordshire
Re: Feeding Ewes 5 weeks before lambing.
« Reply #5 on: February 27, 2018, 03:38:17 pm »
My twin-bearing Southdowns (one of the breeds used to create the Suffolk, along with the Norfolk Horn) and Badger Faced (some pure bred, some in lamb to a Southdown) are on 100g twice a day for lambing minus weeks 6 and 5, then 200g for a week, then 300g, then 400g, then 450g for the final week and into lambing.  Grass is low and quality poor so they've been getting ad lib hay since Christmas.  I find this regime produces decent sized lambs and a good supply of milk but nothing too large.  The only time I change this is if one of the older ewes scans with twins and I start her on 100g twice a day at minus 8 weeks.

CarolineJ

  • Joined Dec 2015
  • North coast of Scotland
Re: Feeding Ewes 5 weeks before lambing.
« Reply #6 on: March 01, 2018, 07:12:24 pm »
North Country Cheviots, all gimmers - the twins are getting 1lb 18% ewe rolls a head per day and have adlib hay.  The singles are out on a rough field and are only getting 0.5lb a head per day because of the snow.  All have Crystalyx high energy blocks.

 

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