WHOLE-GRAIN DIETS FOR FINISHING LAMBS

STEVEN H. UMBERGER

Whole-grain feeding of lambs improves feed efficiency, increases average daily gain, and lowers overall feed costs per pound of gain. It is the most profitable feeding program that can be used for grain-based finishing of feedlot lambs. Whole-grain diets consist of whole (unprocessed) grains, such as shelled corn or barley, mixed with a pelleted protein-vitamin-mineral supplement.

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URINARY CALCULI IN SHEEP AND GOATS

SUSAN SCHOENIAN

Urinary calculi or “water belly” is a common metabolic disease of male sheep and goats. The disease occurs when calculi (stones), usually comprised of phosphate salts, lodge in the urinary tract and prevent urination. Normally, phosphorus is recycled through saliva and excreted via feces in ruminants. High grain, low roughage diets decrease the formation of saliva and therefore increase the amount of phosphorus excreted in the urine

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INDUSTRY EFFORTS UNDERWAY TO HELP SHEEP RAISERS

JERRY LACKEY

The American Sheep Industry has launched two initiatives this month to increase sheep inventory and return a portion of wool processing to the United States. The Let’s Grow with twoPLUS campaign has been on the drawing board for several years. Glen Fisher of Sonora, immediate past president of the Colorado-based American Sheep Industry Association, appointed members of the Rebuilding the Sheep Inventory Committee several years ago.

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IDEM IS FORMING NEW CFO AND CAFO RULES FOR INDIANA

KATIE NICKAS

Producers and representatives of the livestock industry attended a meeting of the Water Pollution Control Board to comment on the proposed rules for confined feeding operations and concentrated animal feeding operations in Indiana. The Indiana Department of Environmental Management, Indiana’s environmental authority, is proposing to upgrade the requirements for all CFOs through a revised rule, which is about 50 pages in its current format.

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MANAGEMENT FOR SPRING BREEDING

DR. SCOTT P. GREINER

For a variety of reasons, interest among sheep producers to have fall-born lambs is on the rise.  Fall-born lambs typically are well-suited to take advantage of strong early-spring market prices.  Additionally, there is strong demand for fall-born lambs to meet the needs of youth which have spring market lamb shows.  Favorable weather and forage production associated with fall lambing compliment these marketing opportunities.  However, with sheep being very seasonal in their reproduction, fall-lambing is limited by the ability to get ewes pregnant in the spring.  There are several options producers have to enhance the opportunity for spring breeding to be successful.

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ON-FARM PERFORMANCE TESTING FOR MEAT GOAT DOE HERDS

RICHARD BROWNING, JR., PH.D.

Performance testing is the comparative evaluation of goats for production traits of economic importance: reproduction, growth, and carcass merit. Ancestry (pedigree) and visual appraisal for conformation (appearance) have been the primary basis of animal selection in meat goat herds. Most resource inputs (i.e., herd expenses) go into doe management. In return, does are expected to become pregnant, deliver live newborns, and raise multiple kids with good growth to weaning. Reproduction is generally viewed as the most important trait of meat animal production.

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