Category Archives: Nutrition

Feeding during gestation

Probably the easiest error to make in the early years of shepherding is to provide the wrong level of nutrition to the gestating ewes. This is typically a “rookie mistake” that occurs once or twice as the shepherd learns the intricacies of gestational requirements. Unfortunately this learning curve can occur at the expense of the […]

The lawn!

Our ewes are on their last round through our pastures, and as they leave each field, I “put the pasture to bed” for the winter. I mow each field off, leaving little cover to harbor parasites and allowing the cold north winds to kill off as many of them as possible when the temps finally […]

A hay decision

Making hay is a pretty exact science. If the hay is cut too early, the yield from that field is less than what it could have been, reducing the output for the work invested. If the hay is cut too late, the palatability and nutritional content fade quickly, reducing its quality for animal feed. Timing […]

Creep feed

Our newborn lambs begin their exposure to grain and alfalfa at a very young age. Their digestion of these foods doesn’t really happen in a very efficient manner until they are about six weeks old, but that process is dependent upon early exposure, so within days of birth, they have access to unlimited quantities of […]

Creep feeding

Lambs grow best when they have a variety of foods at their disposal. The problem is that when they are young (as they are now), they’re in among the ewes, who are not only hungry, but ravenous! They are lactating, and this production of food from their own bodies makes them eating machines, devouring any […]