When breeding sheep, sooner or later you will have to deal with issues related to pregnancy and childbirth. Consider how sheep lambing occurs, what problems can be encountered during pregnancy, and how many lambs a sheep brings per year.
- Suitable time for mating
- Signs of pregnancy in a sheep
- Duration of pregnancy
- Lambing of sheep
- Determining the date of birth, lambing process
- Preparation for lambing
- Signs of the approaching lambing
- Reciprocating <
- Complications during and after lambing
- First actions after lambing
- Conclusion <
Suitable time for mating
C from a physiological point of view, a sheep can become pregnant already at the age of 7. However, zootechnicians at this age do not advise a sheep and a sheep to breed. Despite the fact that the animal has reached puberty, his body is still not strong enough, and pregnancy and childbirth are complex process, time consuming. The optimal age for mating is 18 months. Some livestock specialists are inclined to believe that a sheep is able to tolerate viable lambs already at the age of 12 months, but before this time it is extremely undesirable to breed.
Mating takes place in Sheep hunting period, which is characterized by extremely restless animal behavior. The skin in the genital area swells and reddens, mucous discharge appears. Also characteristic of the onset of sexual hunting is the aggressive behavior of the female in relation to other sheep. Aggression is manifested in the fact that it begins to jump on them. But the sheep reacts calmly to sheep during this period, does not try to run away.
The sheep hunt lasts no more than 48 hours, so it is very important to launch the sheep in time for the sheep.
Many keep in a flock of one goat, because sheep graze with it better. But the sheep’s goat will not be covered, so it shouldn’t be separated from the flocks during the sexual hunt of the females.
Signs of pregnancy in a sheep
Sheep does not become pregnant after each cover of it with a ram, therefore, it will be useful to find out how to determine pregnancy in a sheep. First of all, it is possible to judge that the mating was successful by the absence of the next sexual hunt. However, the absence of sexual hunting does not always mean that the animal carries lambs. Sometimes this symptom indicates a health problem.
Currently, there are several methods for determining the pregnancy of animals:
- internal examination.
With the reflexology method, you need to run a sheep in a pen with sheep. Do this 2.5-3 weeks after covering the females. A ram will have no interest in pregnant animals. This method is not the most accurate. But it is applicable, especially if other signs of sheep pregnancy are observed.
The palpation method will help to answer the question about pregnancy only 60 days after the mating of the sheep was made. Before feeling the stomach, and this is the essence of the method, the animal is not given food for 12 hours. Then, standing behind the sheep, they feel it. In pregnant animals, the right side is more voluminous than the left. Also, when feeling at this time, one can already distinguish the outlines of a lamb.
Internal research as a method for diagnosing pregnancy can be used 65-70 days after coating. Its essence lies in the fact that pregnant animals have vibrations in the posterior uterine arteries. But to make sure they are available, you will have to insert a hand into the rectum of the animal.
Duration of pregnancy
A sheep must be carefully monitored during pregnancy.On average, the birth of a sheep occurs 146 days after mating (an average of 5 months). But sometimes an individual gives birth to lambs earlier or later than the due date. Basically, how much a pregnant sheep walks depends on the quality of nutrition and the health of the animal. With improper nutrition, the fetus develops poorly, and the animal carries a litter longer. The lambing date is also postponed if the animal is in poor health. Coagulation does not affect the behavior of lambs and does not change their normal lifestyle.
By improper diet should be understood as a lack of minerals. During pregnancy, mineral supplements such as bone meal, table salt and finely ground chalk should be present in the sheep’s diet.
The quality of nutrition affects not only how many pregnant sheep walk, but also the number of lambs. Also, the number of offspring depends on the characteristics of the breed and the state of health of the mother. Typically, lambs give birth to 2 lamb. In rare cases, one lamb gives birth to 3 lamb. The weight of newborns is on average 5 kg. Some breeds are characterized by fertility. So, for example, Romanovskie lambs can bring 5 viable lambs during lambing.
Lamb of the sheep
The lamb of the sheep cannot be called complex. Often animals do not need outside help. Complications during childbirth are extremely rare, but lamb pregnancy should not be allowed to drift. Properly prepare for lambing and the appearance of a lamb.
Determining the date of birth, lambing process
The duration of pregnancy is about 5 months. This time is enough to prepare a place in the barn for newborns, who are housed separately from their mother. The sheep’s gestational age is determined by the date of mating, which is advisable to produce in the fall: this period the animal is most ready for pregnancy. Accordingly, the birth of a sheep occurs in late winter or early spring.
Lambs that appeared in the winter lamb, as practice shows, are stronger than lambs born in the spring. In addition, winter lambs have a higher survival rate. But during the winter lambing, fewer cubs are born than during the spring lambing.
Lambing in a sheep lasts no more than 60 minutes. If more than 1 baby is born, then the interval between their birth is about 15 minutes. Longer births are a deviation from the norm, they indicate the presence of problems. In this case, you need to help the animal. It is not always possible to do this independently because of the lack of certain knowledge and skills. Therefore, it is advisable to call a specialist before childbirth, who will monitor the process.
Preparation for lambing
At home, it is not difficult to take birth, but you need to properly prepare the room where the birth will take place and the mother giving birth. Start preparing the premises should be 8-10 days before the expected date.
First of all, carefully cleaned in the barn. If lambing will occur in the same room in which the rest of the flock is kept, there is a place for childbirth and enclosed. Pre-lay dry litter in the cleaned area.
In order for the lambing to be successful, over the past 2 weeks they have been monitoring the nutrition and drinking regimen of women in labor. Only those foods that are easily digestible are included in the diet. At least 2 times a day, a pregnant lamb is watered. Over the past few days, they have been closely monitoring the condition of the woman in childbirth.
Signs of the approaching lamb
To be around during lambing, you need to know what signs indicate the approaching birth. The first sign, which indicates that the sheep is roaming somewhere after 3 days, is an increase in the udder. Also, before the birth, the belly begins to sag, the genitals swell. It is not possible to determine the lambing date more precisely. It is necessary to focus solely on the behavior of the woman in childbirth.
When the above signs appear, it is advisable to place the woman in labor in a separate room. When it comes to winter labor, this room should be heated and dry. Pre-installed in the premises for childbirth, which is conventionally called between the farmers a warming place, drinking bowls and feeders.
As a rule, human intervention during childbirth is not required, but the process is better control. For example, if the fetus is not located correctly, difficulties will arise. In this case, one can not do without the help of a specialist.
As a rule, a newly-made mother cuts the umbilical cord on her own. If this does not happen, a person will have to do it, so sharp and previously sanitized scissors should be at hand. Cut the umbilical cord at a distance of 8-10 cm from the abdomen. Necessarily the place in which the umbilical cord was cut is disinfected. It is best to use iodine for this. Next, the sinuses of the newborn lamb are cleaned from mucus. It should not be zealous. In the absence of complications during lambing, the lamb will lick the lamb on its own, therefore, after clearing the sinuses, the newborn is placed next to the woman in labor. In the first hours after giving birth, lambs can be left with a sheep.
When taking birth at home, you should know that you need to drink colostrum for newborns in the first 40 minutes of their life.But the first milk should be decanted: it has too high fat content. The mother herself is fed no earlier than 4 hours after giving birth. But the water should always be nearby.
We can say that the birth of a sheep was successful only after the last. And this should happen no later than 6 hours after lambing, otherwise you should immediately go to the doctor. The last and the litter, on which the lambing occurred, are instilled.
Complications during and after lambing
Sometimes soft sheep cannot give birth on their own. Most often this happens if the fetus is located with the hind legs forward. In this case, it is advisable that a specialist provide assistance. If this is not possible, you will have to take birth yourself. But before helping, be sure to wash your hands thoroughly. To help the mother in childbirth, they break the amniotic fluid, then release the liquid from it and unfold the lamb. This must be done very carefully.
Sometimes a sheep does not have enough milk. In this case, newborns are fed with milk of another sheep. If this is not possible, then use cow’s milk. Milk in a cow is less nutritious than in sheep, so it should be given more than the recommended norms. To control the growth of lamb, use the weighting table.
The process of childbirth, as well as relief from complications, can be seen in the video. However, when watching a video, you cannot get the right skills.Therefore, assistance should be handled by a qualified specialist.
First steps after lambing
If the lamb has successfully lambed, there is no need to take any special action. The animal bounces back a few days after birth. Lambs are taken away from the mother, because her behavior during this period can be unpredictable. They let the lamb to the sheep only during feeding. Newborns should be eaten at least 1 time in 3 hours. If at the same time gives birth to several sheep, then after lambing they can be kept together. During feeding, the sheep finds its cub by smell.
A few days after lambing, the sheep should be carefully monitored. Complications after some time can occur even if the birth went well. Most often, farmers face a problem such as postpartum paresis. This disease leads to the death of the sheep.
You can stop monitoring the sheep after 8 days after lambing. During this time, fluid is released from the genitals, which is not a deviation from the norm. If such discharge does not stop after a week, then the genitals are damaged.
The first time after childbirth, the newly minted mother walks and grazes reluctantly. The reason for this is concern about the lack of lambs.After some time, this anxiety disappears.
Pregnancy in sheep usually proceeds without any complications.
How many times a year can a sheep bring lambs? In general, mating may occur during each sexual hunt. But livestock specialists do not recommend often covering the animal. Recommended mating frequency – 1 time per year. If we are talking about breeding sheep as a business, then you can mate 2 times in 3 years.