|See what I mean?|
A rising plane of nutrition before mating in October maximises the number of eggs shed and potentially fertilised. This is phase one.
After mating the number of fertilised eggs implanted in the uterus depends on continuing good nutrition through December and January. Nutritional stress now means that some developing embryos will be reabsorbed.
|Soaking up the sun|
During the lambing, in April, its a matter of keeping new born lambs alive; sometimes with assisted deliveries but again its mainly nutrition and hygiene, they must have colostrum and an increasing supply of milk.
With good management and luck we should have a lambing percentage of 150. On hill farms conditions are harsher and expectations lower, perhaps 100 - 110 per cent. In lowland Britain intensively managed flocks produce 180 - 190 lambing percentage.
That's not all! We also have to minimise disease, parasites, accidents ( lambs are accidents waiting to happen), the effects of bad weather and of course foxes. If you have not worked it out; the lamb above has got under the bottom wire, is isolated from its Mum and is very noisy, hungry and unhappy.