Agri Vehicles Insurance from Greenlands

Author Topic: Fox (or worse badger?) attack on lamb...  (Read 9437 times)

Anke

  • Joined Dec 2009
  • St Boswells, Scottish Borders
Fox (or worse badger?) attack on lamb...
« on: April 10, 2012, 02:51:14 pm »
Not a good start to the day... found a one week old lamb without its head this morning in the field, just next to the fence.... no other bite marks, but probably not killed where we found it, no blood or other mess (but it had been raining during the night). I am really devastated, this was a healthy bouncy lamb last night and we have not been troubled by foxes in the last three years. (and to top it all it was one of triplets, and I have just about managed to get the third one onto the bottle, and here is the ewe, having gone out with two, loosing one... and no more hope of putting the third one back on!) The  ewe was an older experienced girl.

Now don't know what to do this evening, I can try and bring the ewes (there is only three out so far, and now four lambs between them) back into the shed, but I am not hopeful, and anyway, all the pens are full we have a further three lambing this morning (one with vet attendance, but that's another story...), so i will need them outside soon, or I can bring one of the tups into the field, maybe he would see a fox/badger off???

I am trying to see if anyone local has a fox trap, we could use the left bit of the lamb as bait...

Not a good day so far... on a brighter note, one ewe who had a single earlier this morning, just delivered a second one, she has been in her pen for at least a couple of hours, suckled her first born, had some food and drink... had a snooze...

in the hills

  • Joined Feb 2012
Re: Fox (or worse badger?) attack on lamb...
« Reply #1 on: April 10, 2012, 03:22:04 pm »
So sorry Anke. That must have been awful.  :'(

Strangely enough my sheep mentor popped his head over the hedge this morning for a look at my lambs. He was talking about how small my Soay twins were and said that foxes and badgers are quite canny and will pick out a ewe with twins knowing that she cant defend both easily as they separate in the chaos. He suggested we get some raddle and run a line down their backs - says the odd, artificial smell is said to put them off. We dont have any.

Maybe if you have some its worth a try.

jaykay

  • Joined Aug 2012
  • Cumbria/N Yorks border
Re: Fox (or worse badger?) attack on lamb...
« Reply #2 on: April 10, 2012, 04:24:01 pm »
Oh no!  :-*

Try the tup in the field. Watch him to see how he is with the ewes and lambs - mine was a right pain for a couple of hours then settled down when I put him in with the hoggs. If he's ok, as you say, he's another line of protection.

That's why some folk have an alpaca wether or llama, as guards, I gather. Don't know if it works of if it's just a canny bit of marketing.....

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: Fox (or worse badger?) attack on lamb...
« Reply #3 on: April 10, 2012, 05:40:23 pm »
Sounds like a badger, taking the head.

Better than raddle is Pledge spray polish on the head and bum.  Our neighbour uses this and puts his ewes plus lambs out on the hill, where there are both foxes and badgers, with no lamb losses at all.
"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.

MrsJ

  • Joined Jan 2009
Re: Fox (or worse badger?) attack on lamb...
« Reply #4 on: April 10, 2012, 05:43:07 pm »
We have our ram in the field with the ewes and lambs.  He's a bit bonkers just after each one gives birth (aparently the ewes give off a hormone to bring the milk in) but he's fine the rest of the time and I think he would protect them.

in the hills

  • Joined Feb 2012
Re: Fox (or worse badger?) attack on lamb...
« Reply #5 on: April 10, 2012, 05:56:59 pm »
Does any polish spray work or does it have to be Pledge?  ;D

Might the ewe object to the smell?

I was hoping to keep our on loan ram in with our ewes to help protect the lambs but he became rather aggressive as they were getting closer to lambing. When I found the dead lamb in the field, he was standing over it with the ewe. Not sure what happened but it has made me a bit worried about keeping the tup in with the ewes in future.

suziequeue

  • Joined Feb 2010
  • Llanidloes; Powys
Re: Fox (or worse badger?) attack on lamb...
« Reply #6 on: April 10, 2012, 06:59:12 pm »
How do you spray the Pledge on their head without getting it in their eyes?

Does the ewe get confused by the smell?

Very interested in this.....
We do the best we can with the information we have

When we know better we do better

Anke

  • Joined Dec 2009
  • St Boswells, Scottish Borders
Re: Fox (or worse badger?) attack on lamb...
« Reply #7 on: April 10, 2012, 08:48:58 pm »
Well we did manage to get everyone back into the shed, with some confusion, as of course the space in there is limited and the lambs went around all available ewes and got butted about a bit. But settled down... Will get some Pledge tomorrow, and probably get some onto the ewe's nose too?

Just sometimes wonder why badgers are protected and foxes are classed as vermin....

Bramblecot

  • Joined Jul 2008
Re: Fox (or worse badger?) attack on lamb...
« Reply #8 on: April 10, 2012, 09:27:08 pm »
Anke,  Sorry to hear about your loss.   :bouquet: I think my tiny Shetland lamb was lucky to get away with two nasty holes in her thigh.  Spoke to a gamekeeper this evening and he said that foxes usually go for the rear end first - but with my chickens they bite the heads off and then come back for the rest of the body.  Another farmer has told me to put a dab of Stockholm tar on their shoulders (get if from horse supplies).  I was worried about the smell putting off the ewe but it can't be worse than Pledge  :-\.  I hope your lot have safety in numbers.

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: Fox (or worse badger?) attack on lamb...
« Reply #9 on: April 10, 2012, 11:29:25 pm »
Well we did manage to get everyone back into the shed, with some confusion, as of course the space in there is limited and the lambs went around all available ewes and got butted about a bit. But settled down... Will get some Pledge tomorrow, and probably get some onto the ewe's nose too?

Just sometimes wonder why badgers are protected and foxes are classed as vermin....

I think that putting a smell onto the ewes nose is when you are adopting on a lamb - wouldn't be needed against the fox as you want her to still be able to identify her lamb.  By a few days old she will be identifying it by sight and sound as well as by smell (lambs can identify their dams by sound from before they are born) so sight, sound and what she can smell through the pledge should be enough.  I suppose the pledge idea is to put something extremely human onto the lamb to scare off or confuse the fox.  We find it hilarious that our neighbour carries his can of pledge around on his quad bike, as if he stops to give it a quick polish if it gets too muddy, but he does swear by it against predators.
Maybe if you put the spray mostly on the chest and back that will leave the head and bum for the ewe to smell.

In the hills - the mystique is that it has to be pledge  ::) and tesco cheapest just won't do  :D :D

Susiqueue - put your hand over the lambs eyes, or just spray on chest and back.

I must point out that we have never tried this but our neighbour has been rearing sheep as well as other livestock in large numbers all his life and is renowned as a good stockman (unlike the one on the other side who is quite the opposite)
« Last Edit: April 10, 2012, 11:32:35 pm by Fleecewife »
"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.

wallyward

  • Joined Mar 2012
Re: Fox (or worse badger?) attack on lamb...
« Reply #10 on: April 11, 2012, 08:01:23 am »
Hi

been recently reading a thread over on Farming Forum about this sort of thing. There are a lot of people on there who swear by Stockholm Tar, some on head and shoulders and a bit down the back was the most common thing.

Big Light

  • Joined Aug 2011
    • Facebook
Re: Fox (or worse badger?) attack on lamb...
« Reply #11 on: April 11, 2012, 07:12:36 pm »
Now there's certainly a twist to the add

"if you care about it pledge it"

 :D

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: Fox (or worse badger?) attack on lamb...
« Reply #12 on: April 12, 2012, 01:04:01 am »
Now there's certainly a twist to the add

"if you care about it pledge it"

 :D

 :D :D


Wallyward - a possible problem with Stockholm tar is that it is horribly messy and contaminates the fleece.  Maybe pledge leaves it nice and shiny clean  ;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.

 

Lost a ewe - badger attack?

Started by Mrs Pea (13.97)

Replies: 11
Views: 8133
Last post February 11, 2014, 12:08:26 am
by WildWelshShepherdess
Welsh Badger Faced ram lamb for sale (yorks) 35.

Started by landroverroy (11.15)

Replies: 2
Views: 2134
Last post November 24, 2010, 08:31:17 pm
by landroverroy
Fox attack on lamb

Started by ScotsGirl (10.32)

Replies: 4
Views: 2766
Last post April 13, 2010, 11:11:13 am
by morri2
Help need to bring sheep in after lamb attack but only have shaving

Started by piggy (9.98)

Replies: 4
Views: 2636
Last post April 24, 2012, 05:06:54 pm
by piggy
it gets worse

Started by agri293 (8.1)

Replies: 14
Views: 5729
Last post March 06, 2012, 06:49:54 am
by kanisha

Forum sponsors

FibreHut Energy Helpline Thomson & Morgan Time for Paws Scottish Smallholder & Grower Festival Ark Farm Livestock Movement Service

© The Accidental Smallholder Ltd 2003-2023. All rights reserved.

Design by Furness Internet

Site developed by Champion IS