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Author Topic: first lambing questions  (Read 6397 times)

Jode

  • Joined Aug 2012
first lambing questions
« on: April 11, 2015, 07:51:33 am »
Hi all. We are new to sheep and are awaiting our first lambs. We have 5 Manx Loaghtan and 4 grey faced Dartmoor ewes. The first Manx was due from two days ago, the other 4 manx not till late April. They weren't scanned so don't know who is expecting what. Having read lots we are planning for them to lamb outside and bring into the barn for 24/48 hours after. But if the first Manx lambs and the others aren't due yet should we bring just her and lamb/s in or will it stress her to be without her pals?

And with the gfd's we have trimmed around their back ends but I think we also need to trim around their teats as there is so much fleece. Do we do that before they lamb and if so how? They are huge and tipping them isn't easy and I don't want to stress them! Or do we wait until they've lambed and then tip and trim? Or should I have a go at trimming while they are standing thru the back legs? They are due from next week.

Lambing is all I'm thinking about an am spending all my time reading up and watching you tube videos! Am really hoping they just get on with it!

And last question. The paddock they are in they have been in for two weeks prior to that it was empty. If we worm the ewes after they have lambed I assume it is better for them to go into a fresh paddock? But what if only one has lambed?

Thanks in advance for your responses x

Foobar

  • Joined Mar 2012
  • South Wales
Re: first lambing questions
« Reply #1 on: April 11, 2015, 08:18:53 am »
Don't separate any ewe until after it has lambed, they need company at all times either from the other ewes or from it's own lamb.


Trimming - yes, do trim if you think the wool is blocking access to the teats but don't tip them whilst they are heavily pregnant.  So therefore it would be best to wait until they lamb then trim.  In future years you might consider trimming before tupping or maybe January time.


Don't turn out just one ewe+lamb into the fresh paddock on her own, they will be safer in a group.  You can worm that first ewe later when you have more girls that have lambed.  You need to read the SCOPS guidelines to know if, when and what to worm with really, or talk to your vet. (http://www.scops.org.uk/)


Good luck! :)




Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: first lambing questions
« Reply #2 on: April 11, 2015, 09:17:56 am »
I know you have already taken this decision, but I don't see that you need to bring in your Manx once they've lambed, unless there's a problem with mothering up or something else, which is unlikely with Manx.  You need suitable shelters around the place so the ewes can be under cover if they choose.  We have added old hay bales in a 3 prong pattern for the lambs to shelter behind.  Manx, like my Hebrideans, know just what they're about, even first timers.
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

Womble

  • Joined Mar 2009
  • Stirlingshire, Central Scotland
Re: first lambing questions
« Reply #3 on: April 11, 2015, 09:40:36 am »
Manx, like my Hebrideans, know just what they're about, even first timers.

Yes, we're first timers this year too, as are our Manx Loaghtans. It was amazing that they knew exactly what they were doing - far better than the Zwartbles.

Ours lambed outside in driving rain and then snow. They didn't even bother with any of the shelter we provided, but preferred instead to lamb along the dry stone wall. The nooks and crannies in that, plus some wind shadow from Mum were enough for the lambs to find shelter, and though I was concerned at the time, they all did brilliantly (all twins, and all with no help whatsoever from us).

Our only real trouble was ringing the boys' bits. At five days old we still couldn't be sure the balls had properly dropped, but by seven days old we couldn't catch the little ****s at all!  :roflanim:
"All fungi are edible. Some fungi are only edible once." -Terry Pratchett

Liz Kershaw

  • Joined Aug 2014
Re: first lambing questions
« Reply #4 on: April 11, 2015, 09:55:19 am »
Hi all, my first post too ... We have one ewe with twins, strong ram and weak tiny ewe. They were born Wednesday morning. The tiny ewe lamb has tight tendons so initially couldn't reach mum to feed. I have been supplementing but she seems to have gone off the bottle. Because she is so small I am keeping them in at night and turning out into a small paddock in the day but my worry is worms as this is the area mum lambed in (she ignored her comfy shed). We don't have lots of choice for where to put them so I intend  to turn them out properly into the area just vacated by the shearlings. Our recent fecal egg count was very low. So, should I worm mum today before she goes into the new area? How long do the worms take to vacate the system? And when should I worm the lambs in view of the tiny one's delicate state? The vet said she should be on grass each day to practise her walking. Thank you in advance for any tips.

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: first lambing questions
« Reply #5 on: April 11, 2015, 11:25:23 am »
 :roflanim:  The little bleepers can run like the wind.  Mr F has perfected the flying rugby tackle - just has to be careful not to squash the lamb  ;D
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

clydesdaleclopper

  • Joined Aug 2009
  • Aberdeenshire
Re: first lambing questions
« Reply #6 on: April 11, 2015, 07:21:51 pm »
Liz if you egg count was very low do you need to worm them?
Our holding has Anglo Nubian and British Toggenburg goats, Gotland sheep, Franconian Geese, Blue Swedish ducks, a whole load of mongrel hens and two semi-feral children.

Womble

  • Joined Mar 2009
  • Stirlingshire, Central Scotland
Re: first lambing questions
« Reply #7 on: April 11, 2015, 07:41:50 pm »
:roflanim:  The little bleepers can run like the wind.  Mr F has perfected the flying rugby tackle - just has to be careful not to squash the lamb  ;D

Sinking feeling:  I've just realised I've got to catch them ALL in a couple of weeks time for their Hep-P.  Heaven only knows how we're going to manage that!!
"All fungi are edible. Some fungi are only edible once." -Terry Pratchett

Bramblecot

  • Joined Jul 2008
Re: first lambing questions
« Reply #8 on: April 11, 2015, 08:29:08 pm »
Hi :wave: , Welcome to the world of GFD :hugsheep: .    My last one is due to lamb today :fc: .

Are your ewes first time lambing? Sometimes they can be a bit slow to allow the lambs to suckle.  It is often helpful to cut back the fleece in front of the back legs just so the lambs can get to the teats easily, and you can do that easily enough with them standing.  It may look a bit strange but that only matters if you are showing them in full fleece. ::) .  Also a trim of mum's fringe may help her see the lamb  8)
Lots of helpful tips on the GFD facebook page.   And when you have your lovely lambs, beware of the gunky yellow bums - not all ewes are good at cleaning up and it sets like stinky toffee if left :o .
Good luck, let us know how you get on.

Jode

  • Joined Aug 2012
Re: first lambing questions
« Reply #9 on: April 11, 2015, 09:51:31 pm »
Thank you all for your replies. Some are first timers and others have lambed before but we haven't had them very long and I've not worked out which is which yet. Don't want to stress them out so close to lambing to check. We have found the gfds limp a lot and keep checking their feet. Assume it's because they are so heavy?! No sign of any footrot tho some of the hooves are badly cracked at the sides so we trim as necessary and spray with footspray. No such trouble with the Manx. We can see them from our house so are checking frequently. Also have two pygmy goats about to kid. And I'm at an alpaca show tomorrow so sods law I'll miss something!!!!

Liz Kershaw

  • Joined Aug 2014
Re: first lambing questions
« Reply #10 on: April 11, 2015, 11:25:15 pm »
I'm a newbie to sheep keeping and so have been reading up on everything - and accepted practise  seems to be to worm the mum post-partum and the lambs a bit later I haven't chemically wormed the sheep so far as the FEC was low and they didn't need it.

Marches Farmer

  • Joined Dec 2012
  • Herefordshire
Re: first lambing questions
« Reply #11 on: April 12, 2015, 02:25:55 pm »
We worm the ewes 24 hours before they leave the mothering up pen for the nursery shed.  This should hopefully eliminate worms into the bedding, which is them put on the muckheap.  Our lambs go onto a field which wasn't used for turn out last year - ideally should be unused for two years but our farm layout doesn't permit this.  Lambs are wormed once they move onto the next field, which is usually when the oldest is about five weeks, if the weather has been cold then warm and wet, which will cause problems with nematodirus.  Worst period for this is April to June.

Remy

  • Joined Dec 2011
Re: first lambing questions
« Reply #12 on: April 13, 2015, 06:42:57 pm »
:roflanim:  The little bleepers can run like the wind.  Mr F has perfected the flying rugby tackle - just has to be careful not to squash the lamb  ;D


Hahaha I've just run round a 2 acre field twice today in pursuit of a day old lamb.  Only managed to catch it as it got to a fence and dithered momentarily  ::)
1 horse, 2 ponies, 4 dogs, 2 Kune Kunes, a variety of sheep

 

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