help with sheep questions pleasegreenspun.com : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread
I bought 3 mixed breed sheep from my postmaster for my boss. they are in one of my pastures until she gets a pen built. The 2 ewe lambs are 4 and 6 months old, the ram lamb is 6 months old. they have not had their tails docked and they are too big for my elastrator. they have not been wormed either. I no little about sheep and my boss knows less ,but has this place in the country and wants to try to raise sheep for slaughter. I have a host of questions #1 what do you do worm them with and how often?,#2 when do you breed them?#3 do they ned hay and feed like goats do in a small pen? #4 do they have a heat cycle and when does it start?#5 are their any good how-to books I can reccommend? thanks in advance I told her you guys were good. karen
-- Karen Mauk (email@example.com), July 04, 2000
I am not an authority on sheep and I don't pretend to be one.
This is my second season raising lambs. We buy them in the spring, have them slaughtered in fall and put them in the freezer. I don''t want work involved in caring for them over winter and I don't have a shelter for them.
My only problem has been predators. A black bear killed and ate a lamb about 11 days ago.
Othewise, I haven't need to worm the sheep. Our sheep with tails are fine, just not as clean as those that are docked.
Give the lambs fresh water every day. They won't touch it if the water isn't fresh.
Our sheep graze on the pasture. My daughter give them a hand full of sweet feed (by hand) most days just to keep them friendly and used to humans.
We don't breed them.
Keeping our fields fallow for several months between slaughter time and the purchase of new spring lambs breaks the cycle of parasites that live in the ground, I hope. So far, so good.
Before taking them to the slaughterhouse, we pen them for a few days, feed a bit of corn and then, for the last 24 hours we provide water only. Your slaughterhouse will tell you what to do.
Male sure you make an appointment with the slaughterhouse well in advance. I had to wait about 2 months for an appointment last year.
The book I have is called The Shepherd's Guide. Countryside sells, I think, The Modern Way To Raise Sheep, or something like that. Buy your books from Countryside.
-- walt (firstname.lastname@example.org), July 04, 2000.
Karen if you keep them in the same pen for much longer your breeding problem is going to take care of itself! They are very much like goats, same wormings and same schedule. Go to pipevet.com and get their very informative catalog. We fed our sheep the same custom mix we feed the goats, minus we didn't put out the loose minerals that where higher in copper. They cycled just like the goats, though kidded at 145 days like the Lamancha's. 150 days on Nubains here. They are great grazers but don't do great on browze like the goats. I would pay for the tails to be docked if they have heavy wool, it can get down right nasty! Line up someone to shear them once a year or they will become dirty matted powder puffs! Vicki
-- Vicki McGaugh (email@example.com), July 04, 2000.
Raising Sheep the Modern Way is suppose to be the Bible of the sheep world. It is very thourough(sp?) and easy to read.
-- Vaughn (firstname.lastname@example.org), July 05, 2000.
Another reference is The Sheep Raiser's Manual by William K. Kruesi. I don't know if it is still in print. Try www.amazon.com.
-- Ken Scharabok (email@example.com), July 09, 2000.