Monday, March 25, 2013

Raising Sheep - 2.0

Three months back, we bought our first batch of sheep. It was our foray into animal rearing so we were pretty excited about it. A few months into it, we are happy that the animals have become used to the 'stall-fed' life and our adjusting well. It took them about a week to understand the whole concept of climbing up the ramp and being secured in a stall.

During our research, we were advised that sheep were the 'grazers' and goat the 'climbers' and the former did not eat anything above ground. Well, that is not true! When they are hungry, they will stand erect on their hind legs and munch anything that is green and tasty. A handful of smaller and weaker Melia Dubia trees were defoliated by them. Thankfully they do not have a voracious appetite for mango leaves but they will eat tender Moringa leaves.

There is a stark difference between the comfort level of the male and female animals with our staff. The lone male is friendly, playful and occasionally head-butts people. On the other hand, the females are still apprehensive about our staff getting too close to them. I guess it is a matter of time or the mystery of the female thinking is universal! :).


A few sheep being fed CO4 fodder. The branches at the bottom of the picture is that of Agathi. As evident, leaves were cleaned up pretty nicely, leaving only the hard branches.


Deworming in process. Has anybody tried feeding Neem leaves as a deworming agent ?






















For now, the animals are not strictly stall fed. With the onset of summers, grass has turned dry and are being fed CO4 grass. The day starts at 8 am and they are let out in the compound. Soon after, they are fed freshly chopped CO4 grass (approx 20-25 kgs) along with a bundle of Agathi or Subabul. They seem to have taken a liking towards Agathi and Subabul, however it is not advisable to overfeed. At 430 pm, they are fed another round of CO4, after which they are locked up at 6 pm.

 During a recent vet visit we were delighted to find out that quite a few females are 1-2 months pregnant. The gestation period is about 150 days and we hope to see Gen-Next by August. I am aware of a few blog followers have recently started their goat or sheep projects or are contemplating getting into it. Would anyone have insights into sheep's projected weight gain timelines or have recommendations around how to expedite weight gains?

3 comments:

  1. I believe you have hundreds of Melia dubia trees. The leaves from those trees should provide sufficient fodder for the sheeps. Is C04 required?

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  2. We given CO4 for its high nutrition content. Melia Dubia leaves can be a good option during monsoons when the leaves are abundant. However, due to its height, cutting leaves can be a problem..

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  3. Kausthub

    What was the average weight of sheep during your procurement and now.

    ReplyDelete