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Author Topic: Logistics of tup/ewe/lambing on a small scale  (Read 4828 times)

Bumblebear

  • Joined Jun 2012
  • Norfolk
    • http://southwellski.blogspot.co.uk/
Logistics of tup/ewe/lambing on a small scale
« on: May 02, 2015, 10:54:39 am »
Having raised a few lambs for meat we want to have some 'keep sheep' and 'eat sheep'.  We have 3 acres for them, which they will share with our 2 goats.  The question is if we buy say 2 or 3 sheep is it worth buying a ram too?  How easy are they to handle etc?  If we bought ewes with lambs at foot then would we be able to use a son on the mothers?  If we did there must get a point where we cant keep doing that.  OR should we buy a male cade lamb each season to tup the ewes?!  There MUST be a simple solution LOL  Thanks :) 

fiestyredhead331

  • Joined Sep 2012
  • NW Highlands
    • Facebook
Re: Logistics of tup/ewe/lambing on a small scale
« Reply #1 on: May 02, 2015, 11:04:50 am »
hi  :wave:

we had the same issue, a small amount of ewes so for the first couple of years we bought in a tup and when job was done he went in the freezer but this year we bought a tup (boreray) which we will keep for a couple of seasons until this years lambs are ready for tupping then we'll move him on.
When he's not in with the ewes he shares a field etc with our billy goats, its a good size field so they have space to get away from each other but for the most part they co-habit quite happily. So really it depends if you can be bothered with looking after him for the other 11 months of the year but they are easy to keep but it would be worth keeping a wether for company for him so he wont get lonely.
keeper of goats, sheep, pigs, ducks, chickens, turkeys, dogs, cats, goldfish and children, just don't ask me which is the most work!

Bumblebear

  • Joined Jun 2012
  • Norfolk
    • http://southwellski.blogspot.co.uk/
Re: Logistics of tup/ewe/lambing on a small scale
« Reply #2 on: May 02, 2015, 11:27:13 am »
I also thought I could buy in a cade lamb, rear him then let him tup the ladies before sending him to the freezer.  I guess I could do that each year  :thinking:  OR just do the cade lamb thing with a commercial breed and get a couple of pet sheep.   :excited:

Bionic

  • Joined Dec 2010
  • Talley, Carmarthenshire
Re: Logistics of tup/ewe/lambing on a small scale
« Reply #3 on: May 02, 2015, 12:34:17 pm »
We bought a ram lamb for our 6 ewes. He did the job well and we sold him on the next year.
Life is like a bowl of cherries, mostly yummy but some dodgy bits

Me

  • Joined Feb 2014
  • Wild West
Re: Logistics of tup/ewe/lambing on a small scale
« Reply #4 on: May 02, 2015, 02:02:16 pm »
You could buy a tup lamb off a neighbour in the autumn, run him with the ewes kill him at xmas? Some people do that with me every year

Anke

  • Joined Dec 2009
  • St Boswells, Scottish Borders
Re: Logistics of tup/ewe/lambing on a small scale
« Reply #5 on: May 02, 2015, 10:19:56 pm »
Depends if you want to pure-breed (and use ewe labs for future breeding, either yourself or for sale as breeding stock) or if you just want to rear (all) lambs for meat (as lambs rather than hogget or mutton). Also depends if you want to sell lambs at market or just have meat for yourself.



Azzdodd

  • Joined Apr 2012
Re: Logistics of tup/ewe/lambing on a small scale
« Reply #6 on: May 02, 2015, 11:22:14 pm »
I have a small flock an I keep the ram with them year round an he's no problem at all everyone is different all my lambs including ewe lambs are killed really unless there outstanding (small ewe's) so most go in the box for my customers until the ewes get to 4/5 years then I will keep the ewe lambs an eat the tup myself an replace him works easier for me

Slimjim

  • Joined Apr 2013
  • North Devon
Re: Logistics of tup/ewe/lambing on a small scale
« Reply #7 on: May 03, 2015, 09:57:39 am »
I would say 3 ewes is a minimum. A fairly common practice is to buy a ram lamb about October to tup them then either sell or eat him when he's finished. I know that is one of your options, and plenty of people do that.

Marches Farmer

  • Joined Dec 2012
  • Herefordshire
Re: Logistics of tup/ewe/lambing on a small scale
« Reply #8 on: May 03, 2015, 10:55:07 am »
If we bought ewes with lambs at foot then would we be able to use a son on the mothers?  If we did there must get a point where we cant keep doing that. 

That's called inbreeding and it's something that most shepherds go to considerable (and expensive) lengths to avoid.  By inbreeding you are running a great risk of concentrating and fixing any bad traits, such as poor teeth or feet, poor carcase and susceptibility to problems such as swayback.  It can also fix good traits but you really need to be an expert shepherd and have a closed flock that you know extremely well to do it successfully.

 

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