Teagasc has outlined some advice for dealing with poor lamb performance this summer.
According to its latest newsletter on sheep farming: “Lambs on grass alone should be growing at over 150g per day post weaning, with a target of about 200g per day or 1.4kg per week. You will only know if you are on target by weighing some unfinished lambs. You need to put a permanent mark or tag on these lambs, as you will need to re-weigh the same lambs a few weeks later. Then calculate the growth rate per day.”
The logistics for measuring this are quite straightforward, as lambs are being gathered for drafting, it said.
There are a number of reasons for lambs’ poor performance, the advisory authority found. Teagasc’s advises in the case of shortage of grass for lambs include applying additional fertiliser, selling lambs immediately as they become fit for slaughter and selling store lambs to reduce stocking rate.
It also recommends grazing out pastures containing stem and/or well with adult sheep in good condition or cattle to maintain sward quality.
More information and advice are available via the Teagasc website.