Lambing Difficulty can be the single biggest burden on sheep farms at lambing time. If lambs sired by a particular ram prove to be very hard lambing it can leave the farmer counting the financial loss of increased lamb mortality.
In order to identify what blood lines are producing the hardiest and most viable lambs at birth we must first identify which bloodlines are not as hardy and viable at birth. In order to identify these bloodlines, recording lambs that are dead at birth (or die in the 24 hour period post lambing) is essential. Lambs that are born dead or die within 24 hours of birth must be recorded with a birth status of ‘dead‘. A lamb ID (pedigree ID or NSIS) is not required however it is very important that the lamb’s birth status is marked as ‘dead’ from the dropdown menu. Dead lambs must have birth weights and sex recorded.
Any lamb that dies after 24 hours should be recorded with birth status ‘alive’ at birth then the death date and reason for death should be recorded through the death tab in the inventory, example reason for death ‘laid on’. If lambs are not tagged with official Dept. tags before they die then please put a management tag on them such as “DEAD1, DEAD2..” or “001, 002…” – just something that they can be identified by. Find them with this identifiable management number in your inventory and record death record.
The percentage of dead lambs in every flock is being monitored, and if the national average mortality threshold (according to flock size) is not met then unfortunately this will affect the DQI of the flock.