Farm Ireland

Wednesday 17 January 2018

Five steps to keeping sheep Alive

Michael McHugh

The majority of flocks have low energy requirements at the moment, with ewes not due to lamb until next March. Hay or silage will suffice but make sure it's fed in round feeders or some barrier system to stop trampling and wastage of soiled material. The other option is to feed a rationed amount of forage spread on the ground on a daily basis; 1-1.5kg hay/hd/day or 5kg silage/hd/day. Late lambing ewes that have just been mated or February lambing ewes will require extra energy and will benefit from 0.5kg meals per day along with roughage. Sheep should have access to water where meals are been fed. Avoid over-feeding and introduce meals gradually to avoid acidosis. Tip -- avoid wasting concentrates by feeding it in troughs or on packed lines of snow. This is easily created by driving the tractor or quad to make a line of packed snow. Nuts rather than loose rations are more suitable.

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