Sheep Management, Post Weaning

• Practically all lambs should be weaned (14 weeks old) by now.

• Lamb thrive best if they graze grass between 6-8 cms tall. Grass/clover swards are particularly good for lambs.

• Move lambs regularly to new fields and let thin ewes or other stock graze out the remaining grass in each field.

• Worm control/dosing decisions should be made after having lamb faecal samples analysed for worm egg counts. Otherwise, it may be wasted money/labour and may also lead to quicker development of worm resistance to the particular anthelmintic being used.

• Cobalt drenching may be required on many farms.

• Keep lameness under control by regular foot bathing.

• Research work and farmer experience have clearly indicated that ewes in the correct body condition at mating produce more lambs and have a more compact lambing pattern.

• At weaning, divide ewes into two groups. One group will be those that need to put on weight and the other group will be ewes that just need to maintain their present body condition.

• Light/thin ewes may need to put on between 10-15 kgs liveweight (i.e. a full body condition score) before mating so as to reach their potential in terms of lambs produced next year. On average, they may only gain about 1.5 kgs per week if on good grass. Take action now!