Transitioning Nursing Lambs

Transitioning Nursing LambsTransitioning nursing lambs is an important step in the feeding process. It’s critical to the growth rate and show ring success. We wanted to share some helpful information to aid you in the process of switching. Continue reading for some basics of care and supplies. Hope you find it helpful!

Ewes and Lambing Pens

It is a good idea to leave an ewe with her lambs in a lambing jug for at least 3-5 days post lambing. It is valuable to leave her additional days if the lambing schedule permits. Once this is complete, it is a good idea to “group” ewes in the lambing pens according to birth type.

Creep Feeding Lambs

One of the most important aspects of starting lambs feeding is providing a place where they can reach the feed and ewes cannot. If you have sufficient room, make the lamb creep feeder large enough to accommodate all of the lambs at one time. Remember to look forward and visualize the lambs at 60-70 lbs. and provide sufficient room in the creep feeder for at least 75% of the lambs at this weight.

Alfalfa Hay and Soybean Meal Feed

One of the most important aspects of starting lambs feeding is providing a place where they can reach the feed and ewes cannot. This technique is known as creep feeding lambs and can be sophisticated and complex, or a simple wooden design. If you have sufficient room, make the lamb creep feeder large enough to accommodate all of the lambs at one time. Remember to look forward and visualize the lambs at 60-70 lbs.

Health Concerns

There are a few common health concerns that are important to address. Enterotoxemia or “overeating disease” is caused by Clostridium perfringens Types C & D . These are bacteria that normally live in the small intestine of sheep. When lambs begin consuming feedstuffs that are high in crude protein, these bacteria can proliferate extremely fast. The waste products of these bacteria are toxic to the lamb and affect the central nervous system, causing rapid death. The largest, healthiest looking lambs are generally the ones affected first.

Stop into Kissimmee Valley Feed to ask about how the transitioning of nursing lambs process works. For more information, see the entire article here.

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