BioZyme® Inc. is a company which develops products for animal nutrition, production, microbiology and reproduction. As lambing season approaches they have a few tips for a successful season.
Gestation management can go a long way to prevent issues during lambing. Ensure ewes are feed proper nutrition with a quality vitamin and mineral supplement program.
“During the last trimester, you may consider supplementing with grain to provide the additional energy needed for growing lambs. At lambing, the body score should be between 3 and 3.5. Care must be taken not to feed too much grain early in gestation, and it’s best to make any increases gradual,” said Ben Neale, BioZyme Area Sales Manager and livestock nutrition expert. “A leveling out or drop in late pregnancy grain intake can result in pregnancy toxemia and death of any lambs in utero. Conversely, too little grain will produce an undersized, weak lamb with a poor chance of survival.”
Neale recommends an increase in energy prior to lambing for the ewe to support udder development and help develop fat reserves, which will be needed during lactation. The amount of supplementary feed recommended depends on the size and body condition of the ewes and the quality of forage being fed. BioZyme offers complimentary, custom forage testing and nutritional analysis to producers through its nationwide dealer network. For more information about the program, visit http://www.vitaferm.com/testyourhay/.
A change in diet after delivery is also a good idea, Neale suggests.
“Ewes should be able to maintain a healthy body condition of 2.5 on a diet of good quality hay or available grass. Feeding ewes a mineral supplement, such as VitaFerm® with the Amaferm® advantage, will enable them to more efficiently digest available feedstuffs and maximize the energy value of their feed,” said Neale.
Check with your veterinarian one month after the due date to see about providing an annual clostridial booster and ask if an injection of Vitamin E and/selenium in necessary in your area.
Keep the facilities in good working conditions as well. Warm, clean and dry top Neale’s list, with individual pens where bonding and nursing may be monitored. Once the lamb is stable and treatments have been completed (on average, three days) the lamb and ewe can be placed with other lamb/ewe sets.
“Lambing is stressful on both the ewe and newborn lambs. As with humans, stress has a major effect on the digestive system, and the digestive system is central to good health. It is a good idea to keep one of BioZyme’s Vita Charge® products on hand to help stimulate the lamb’s appetite and water intake,” said Neale.