Analyse ewe forage

3 January 1997

Analyse ewe forage

KNOWING the quality of forage and concentrate fed to early lambing ewes is vital for a trouble-free lambing.

"Underfeeding can cause twin lamb disease. Although marginal under-feeding is not as bad, it may mean ewes are in poor condition at lambing and have little milk for lambs," warns Glos-based ADAS sheep consultant Alistair Bird.

He urges producers to analyse forage, and particularly hay. "This year, many hay samples appear fine but analyses show that although energy levels are reasonable, proteins are low."

He suggests that those producers buying-in concentrate opt for one of 18% protein and 12.5 ME. "That is ideal for a normal lowland lambing. But producers feeding high quality silage or home-mixing using a high quality protein could opt for 16% protein concentrate." &#42

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