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Author Topic: Bone fragments in meat! are my lambs deficient in something?  (Read 1747 times)

carfarmer

  • Joined Mar 2015
Bone fragments in meat! are my lambs deficient in something?
« on: March 15, 2015, 04:58:18 pm »
We've had some of our Zwartble lambs butchers and he warned us that the bones seamed brittle especially when doing the chops, and indeed we found a few fragments when we cooked them.
We had this problem before with a mature Ram but thought it was age related but this has happened a couple of times now. Could it be hereditary, hormonal, vitamin deficiency?
I read somewhere copper intake can cause brittle bones but not necessarily for butchering.
Anyone got any ideas?
I can't sell the meat unless i'm sure its safe and people don't expect bones fragments in their meat so would affect future sales.

Marches Farmer

  • Joined Dec 2012
  • Herefordshire
Re: Bone fragments in meat! are my lambs deficient in something?
« Reply #1 on: March 16, 2015, 09:52:25 am »
Maybe the Zwartbles Sheep Association could offer advice?  Not a problem I've encountered with breeds I've kept.

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
Re: Bone fragments in meat! are my lambs deficient in something?
« Reply #2 on: March 16, 2015, 11:29:52 am »
The only time I've found bone fragments in butchered meat is when the butcher has used an electric saw on very cold or frozen carcases.

If you check back through your sheep's pedigrees you should be able to track any hereditary aspect.

In humans, early brittle bones, osteogenesis imperfecta, has a genetic cause.  Otherwise, again in humans, it's a disease of age, menopause and lack of mobility, with an insufficient amount of calcium in the diet.   So the calcium content of your soil and forage is worth exploring.
« Last Edit: March 16, 2015, 11:31:24 am by Fleecewife »
Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

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

clydesdaleclopper

  • Joined Aug 2009
  • Aberdeenshire
Re: Bone fragments in meat! are my lambs deficient in something?
« Reply #3 on: March 16, 2015, 11:37:21 am »
If you are checking your soil also check magnesium levels as the body needs magnesium to mobilise calcium.
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.

SallyintNorth

  • Joined Feb 2011
  • Cornwall
  • Rarely short of an opinion but I mean well
    • Trelay Cohousing Community
Re: Bone fragments in meat! are my lambs deficient in something?
« Reply #4 on: March 16, 2015, 01:48:46 pm »
Talk to your vet
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 cows (rearing their own calves for beef), pigs, sheep for meat and fleece, ducks and hens for eggs, veg and fruit growing

carfarmer

  • Joined Mar 2015
Re: Bone fragments in meat! are my lambs deficient in something?
« Reply #5 on: March 16, 2015, 02:28:10 pm »
Thanks will see what the vet says when i pay him.

They have two lick blocks as I had the same though on vitamins, magnesium etc but they dont seem to use them very much.

will message Zwartble association see if they have any ideas.

The splinters were in young lambs this time, and I trust our butcher, his work is good and I use the same abattoir  where his normal meat comes from.

farmvet

  • Joined Feb 2014
Re: Bone fragments in meat! are my lambs deficient in something?
« Reply #6 on: March 16, 2015, 10:39:44 pm »
definitely have a chat with your vet. Bone formation is quite complex & depends on the right balance of minerals & vitamins especially calcium, magnesium, vitamin d. as well as the carcass problems you've seen weakness in the bones can lead to fractures & deformitites so its definitely worth investigating. Blood tests ( on cohorts) are not that helpful, but if you have any ribs back from the carcasses they are the best for mineral analysis & also histology. Results take about a week or minerals but a month for histology due to the preparation needed of bone samples. May save you a lot of grief in the future though.

 

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