Video: Gerard Carey talks about the breeding season and this year’s crop of lambs

During the week, AgriLand made the trip down to Gurteen Agricultural College, in Co. Tipperary, to see what was happening on the farm.

While down there, we caught up with the drystock unit manager on the farm, Gerard Carey, to see what was happening on the cattle and sheep end of the business.

In this video (below), Gerard talks about the breeding season, which is currently underway. He tells us how they prepared both the flock of ewes and rams to ensure that they were both in tip-top condition for the breeding period.

Speaking to AgriLand, Gerard said: “The breeding season started in July. The flock is split between early and mid-season lambing ewes.

“There were 100 early-lambing ewes picked and they went to the ram on August 6. Before all that, we dipped the ewes and offered them good-quality grass to get them in good condition.

“Out of the 100 ewes that went to the ram, 98 were ‘tipped’. The breeding period for the mid-season lambing ewes is currently underway.

Rams were turned out to the ewes on October 6. There are 330 ewes in the bunch. In the first 24 hours after the rams were turned out, 92 of the ewes were ‘tipped’.

“A month pre-breeding, we fed the rams about 0.3-0.4kg of concentrates and offered them good-quality grass. They were in good nick going out to the ewes.

“Some of them probably had a body condition score (BCS) of 4.0, which is what I would like them to be at. We footbath them every week, to keep their feet right. The last thing we want is a lame ram.”