Sheep feed

Aboucher

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Hello,

I hope someone can point me in the right direction. We have almost reached our 1 year mark with our first sheep, 3 ewes and 5 lambs. The sheep we got are used to being fed twice a day, a snack of corn and soy on top of pasture. We are interested in a healthy feed to keep them friendly and also top off pasture in winter and during lambing. I have read here that feed isn’t exactly necessary, we had two ewes get thin, one with pregnancy toxemia and we are concerned taking feed away completely would make them thin again. We also had a burst of really cold weather, much colder than normal so they ended up spending a few weeks in the barn prior to lambing. They were okay with hay but got really excited about the feed when we brought it out. We were thinking of trying to avoid soy, maybe a mixture of barley, oats and alfalfa? Maybe a little corn too. Is there a resource I can check out for help with this? Or does anyone have any suggestions? As I said this is new for us so we are very open to ideas, critiques, suggestions, anything.
 

Baymule

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We use an all purpose 14% pellet. We feed it to the sheep, horses, pigs and chickens. Sure makes things easier. LOL That said, for poor ewes that get dragged down by lambs, I give a special ration with cracked corn mixed in and a handful of black oil sunflower seeds. I also mix in a little 16% lamb raiser, it's a sweet feed. We started 6 years ago with 4 bred ewes.

I have one in particular that always looks bad and takes awhile to get back in good condition. I recently sold the 2 breeding ewes that I kept from her and won't keep any more from her. She herself will always get to stay, she loves hugs from our little grand daughters and that is worth keeping her for the rest of her life. We sold half our flock, 6 ewes, last weekend at auction last weekend. It was hard, but to move forward with better stock, we had to cull hard. We kept 6 ewe lambs that look to be twice the quality of what we culled. It's a little genetically lopsided as they all seem to be descended from one very good ewe, but we are also now looking for some registered ewes to upgrade our little flock.

I know the attachment of favorites, but if the poor ewes you have also have equally poor ewes that get dragged down by lambing, you might want to concentrate your efforts on the ewes that stay in good condition. It's hard, the ones we sold had names, I raised them, but Their quality left a lot to be desired.

There isn't enough pasture here to fully support our sheep, so we also feed them, along with free choice hay. Not feed them? Not hardly. They are spoiled creatures, they love their feed and will follow us anywhere.
 

wolf

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When I first heard about pregancy-illness caused by a drop of calcium and glucose in the blood, I started sterilizing my eggshells, grinding them to powder in a food processor, adding an equal amount of sugar to the shells, and grinding a bit more. This I dump in a close coffee-can, and add a tablespoon on top of their cup and a half of sheep & lamb feed - for their last 6-wks before birth. Haven't had a problem.
 
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