Are you prepared for the sheep breeding season?

There is significant scope to increase the prolificy of the Irish ewe flock. As it stands, the majority of farms only wean 1.3 lambs per ewe joined to the ram.

Improving this key performance indicator (KPI) will have a major impact on the productivity of any lowland sheep production. In addition, it will also have a positive impact on the farm’s bottom line.

As the breeding season approaches, sheep farmers may have questions relating to best practice when it comes to managing their flocks to maximise lambing performance.

To help answer some of these questions, Teagasc and the Belclare Society will host a technical field meeting.

The event, which takes place on Friday, August 18, centres on some the key topics relating to maximising the number of lambs produced per ewe joined.

The host farmer, James Kearns, will give an overview of his sheep production system at the Department of Agriculture Approved KT Sheep event. This will be one of the first Year 2 KT events to be held in Ireland this year.

MSD’s Joanne Cregg will also discuss pre-breeding health issues and Sheep Ireland’s Eamon Wall will tell farmers of the benefits of selecting rams on the basis of genetic indices.

Along with a series of talks, Teagasc’s Michael Gottstein will carry out a practical demonstration; this will focus on pre-breeding checks for ewes and rams.

The evening will conclude with a talk from ICM Camolin’s John Walsh. The ICM representative will give an overview on lamb selection/drafting and the current market situation.

When and where?

The technical field evening will take place on the farm of James Kearns, Killanne, Rathnure, Enniscorthy, Co. Wexford on Friday, August 18. The event is set to kick off at 7pm.