Sheep Production Guide - A sheep enterprise can be ranch size or it can fit into a few acres. It can be a full-time occupation, but it also is well suited for diversified and part-time farmers, or it can be expertly handled by the spouse or younger members of the farm family. This guide outlines management practices to help successfully raise sheep.
Breeds, Reproduction & Lambing
Artificial Rearing of Lambs on Milk Replacer Diets - With multiple births, the weakest lamb usually is selected for artificial rearing on milk replaces because it is less capable of competing at the udder. Make the decision to remove the lamb from the ewe as soon as possible after birth. This eases the lamb’s training period and enhances lamb survival.
Body Condition Scoring - Throughout the production cycle, sheep producers must know whether or not their sheep are in condition (too thin, too fat, or just right) for the stage of production: breeding, late pregnancy, and lactation.
Nutrition for Lambing - Do you have your ewes nutritionally prepared for lambing and lactation? Early planning and implementation of a nutrition program for your ewes can decrease problems later. In relationship to lambing, two phases of the ewe’s biological cycle need special dietary consideration.
Tube Feeding Neo-Natal Small Ruminants - This publication gives a complete overview of the topic of tube feeding neonatal lambs and kids. Relevant anatomy, indications, and techniques are presented. Photographs illustrate the techniques discussed. Information about colostrum, biosecurity, sanitation, and passive transfer of immunity is included as well.
Nutrition & Health
Internal Parasites in Sheep and Goats - Parasites commonly found in sheep and goats can be divided into two general categories: external (skin) and internal (organ) parasites.
Nutritional Management of the Sheep Flock - Feed for the ewe flock represents the largest production cost in a sheep enterprise. This means over-nutrition and using costly feedstuffs and ingredients is expensive and undesirable. At the same time, undernutrition is also expensive due to lost productivity. Therefore, it is important to develop a nutritional management program for your flock that optimizes production while minimizing feed costs.
Other Sheep Resources
Maryland Small Ruminant Information - Information portal for sheep and goat producers and anyone else interested in small ruminants.
American Sheep Industry Association - ASI is the national organization representing the interests of more than 82,000 sheep producers located throughout the United States. From East to West, from farm flocks to range operations, ASI works to represent the interests of all producers.
Looking for more information? Try the OSU Extension sheep and goat website.