Lambs at Lyons Farm were weaned last week at an average age of 81 days or just over 11 weeks. This is approximately three weeks earlier than normal for us - the decision to wean was precipitated by poor grass supply arising from a severe soil moisture deficit.
Last year we were weaning early to conserve what grass we had for the lambs; this year we waited until last week to wean any lambs. We had plenty of grass so we left them with their mothers for an extra two weeks. We got some that were fit to kill and these went straight off with their mothers to the factory. The rest were divided into two groups according to their weight and will get the best grass we have, with ewes grazing out after them.
Two free Teagasc national lowland sheep conferences will take place next week. They will be held in the Tullamore Court Hotel, Co Offaly, on Tuesday January 29 and the Clanree Hotel, Letterkenny, Co Donegal, on Thursday January 31.
For the majority of mid-season lambing flocks, the scanning of ewes has already been completed or is fast approaching. Scanning of your ewe flock is one of the most important management tools that a farmer can use to plan for the forthcoming lambing season.
The average accuracy of Sheep in this year's Belclare Premier sale is 43pc, which is a 28pc increase from the 2010 sale. Accuracy figures will continue to rise as we collect more data from both pedigree and commercial flocks and add more traits to the evaluation (i.e. Slaughter data).
The Sheep 2018: Farm to Fork event in Athenry last weekend had something for all those involved in the sheep industry. Exhibits ranged from commercial trade stands, sheep breed shows, a food village, cooking demonstrations, and a range of technical villages outlining the latest research to support the sheep industry.
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