Increasing lamb value at Upper Tinwald
3 Dec 2021
Tom Neill, Upper Tinwald, Torthorwald runs a flock of predominantly Texel x Scotch Mules - 500 ewes and 200 hoggs - but including some Scotch Mules to breed these crosses. Ewe lambs are retained, some hoggs will be sold with lambs at foot along with any gimmers that are spare.
“I’ve been using Premium Ewe nuts from Harbro for probably 12-15 years so at least since 2009. I felt with the multiples that we are producing, I wanted to feed the best ingredients to give ewes and lambs the best possible start and to help prevent twin lamb. I also feed it to get good quality colostrum as we have 100+ triplets and a few quads and this is essential to get them off to the best possible start.”
Key ingredients in Premium Ewe include 18% protein including by-pass protein, omega 3 oils and a mineral package including elevated levels of vitamin E and selenium, in the available form of Sel-Plex. This combination leads to enhanced embryo development, colostrum quality, milk quality and quantity.
Reducing twin lamb disease
Generally, Tom has had fewer cases of Twin Lamb when feeding Premium Ewe with its high energy density and he keeps a careful eye - especially on his gimmers - to make sure that they are getting enough feed.
In order to get as many lambs as possible, Tom flushes the flock well, keeping them tight from speaning in June until the back end when they get a couple of weeks on dairy grass to put on condition and producing eggs.
“This spring I had 90 twins in the hoggs plus a couple of triplets as well. Although their mothers have plenty milk, for easier management, we lift one lamb and then rear on milk replacer using an automatic machine.”
Increasing lamb value
"My aim is to get as much value as possible from these lambs and by putting the ewes to the Beltex, we are increasing the lamb value by £10-15. This type of lamb is very much wanted at the moment at Longtown and Carlisle and they have taken a big jump in value in the first two weeks of November 2021.”