This Birthing Lambs In Cold Winter Homesteading Helps will help new homesteaders with a sheep flock get through successfully with required assistance.
Raising livestock can be extremely challenging especially in the winter time, care for the animals when it is really cold outside. When you add to it that one or more of your female sheep decide that she was going to give birth in the middle of the winter. This means you must be prepared for lambing at a very dangerous time. This article was designed to introduce the readers to how important preparation is to be able to handle the situation of a lamb being born in the winter.
The article was shared by the author in hopes to educate new homesteaders that may not be prepared to deal with such a situation with their livestock. The article describes everything that is needed to be on hand and describes some of the things that you will need to be prepared to do in order to help the situation. All of the information is presented in a way that makes it really easy to read and understand.
Lambs are born during the winter for various reasons. … Sheep are short day/long night breeders meaning they breed late summer/early fall and consequently their lambs are born in the winter and spring.
Colostrum replacer or frozen colostrum, just in case
Lamb nipples/bottles, just in case
Molasses, for an extra boost
High-quality hay, to nourish Mama
Gloves and towels, for delivery assistance if needed
Iodine, for dipping the umbilical cord
Feeding tube, for force feeding if necessary
Thermometer, for monitoring temperatures
Castration equipment, if desired
Record book, for recording births
Scale, for recording weight
Sheep follow a similar reproductive strategy to other herd animals. A group of ewes is generally mated by a single ram, who has either been chosen by a breeder or (in feral populations) has established dominance through physical contest with other rams. Most sheep are seasonal breeders, although some are able to breed year-round. Ewes generally reach sexual maturity at six to eight months old, and rams generally at four to six months.
After mating, sheep have a gestation period of about five months, and normal labor takes one to three hours. Although some breeds regularly throw larger litters of lambs, most produce single or twin lambs.
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