How to get into the zone for the challenges of this lambing season
Lambing season is about to take off so you have to get into the zone and snap out of the winter doziness.
Scanning went well but it's worth nothing unless the lambs appear on the ground. Alive. That is why preparation is key. All the twin-bearing ewes are now getting 0.5kgs of a 20pc soya-based ration and the triplets are getting 0.75kgs.
I feed a high-soya ration because this ensures that the ewes have loads of milk at lambing. It's worth checking the ingredients of your ration - soya needs to be second or third on the list as this indicates the level of soya in the mix.
If it's well down the list, then you need to change your ration. Fail to feed soya to your ewes and then prepare to fail.
The ingredients for the ewe ration I got from Quinns in Baltinglass are: rolled barley, soya bean meal, whole oats, beet pulp nuts, molasses and sheep minerals. Also, you need to group together shy feeders.
Some ewes are shy feeders and can be bullied by other ewes so you need to be aware of this and act quickly to ensure that they are getting their fair share.
I mineral-bolused and fluke and worm-dosed all the in-lamb ewes at the end of January.
I don't normally mineral-bolus the sheep but other farmers around the country who do it told me they have found it worthwhile. I am always willing to try different things. The bolus, by Animax, consists of iodine, selenium and cobalt, which releases slowly over six months.