We are nearly half way through scanning all our ewes which is going well so far: 187% according to our scan man, but he is not the best counter in the world.
Ewes have remained fit through the bad weather, but those carrying twins are being housed straight away followed by a fluke drench and pasteurella and clostridial protection. Once inside, they are being fed ad lib silage and condemned sugar beet. However, managing and taking advantage of this frosted beet is not easy as its shelf life is only a few days, and only hours when it has been harvested badly.
The triplets and leaner ewes are being fed the same diet at the moment until we have finished scanning. Once again we will have a multinational lambing team: Scottish, Irish, Polish and a kiwi. Now I realise that someone applying for a combine driver’s job at harvest may not take his own combine, but if you are going to do a lambing job you should have you own dog, shouldn’t you?
We had lambs away last week at £4.30/kg which seems good. At least there is a premium for organic which helps as organic feed is more than £300/t. Carrs Agriculture have bought two local companies that supplied almost everything a farm would need. I hope they can still carry out the service we have become accustomed to over the years. I wish them well.
I recently bought some sheep without seeing them. This is not the first time but trust is a valuable commodity which there is still plenty of in farming. Fingers crossed they will be good sheep; the only downside is the breed. If I said it’s a breed that does not like staying alive very long, but it’s also a breed that we can’t manage without, you will know they are Bluefaced Leicesters.
Farmer Focus Livestock: Charlie Armstrong