RE-WARMING METHODS FOR COLD-STRESSED NEWBORN CALVES

The extremely cold winter nights have reminded us that spring calving season is just around the corner. More cold temperatures are likely during the upcoming calving season. Robinson and Young from the University of Alberta compared methods of reviving hypothermic or cold-stressed baby calves. Heat production and rectal temperature were measured in 19 newborn calves during hypothermia (cold stress) and recovery when four different means of assistance were provided. Extreme hypothermia of about 86 degrees rectal temperature was found in the calves before re-warming was initiated.

 FULL STORY

PERINATAL MORTALITY IN LAMBS

ROB FOSTER

 Perinatal mortality can be very high and limit sheep production and viability. Limiting perinatal mortality in lambs is therefore an important part of sheep production. David McFarlane in New Zealand and his seminal paper in 1965 describing an autopsy method for the investigation of perinatal losses, represents a huge study on the changes that occur in lambs in the perinatal period. McFarlane (1965) defined perinatal mortality as death during or within seven days of birth. This definition appears to be widely accepted. Dr Kevin Haughey and Dr Stan Dennis published widely on perinatal mortality also, and wrote many publications on the topic in the 1970s. Despite the ease and high economic advantage of limiting perinatal mortality, it is often overlooked.

 FULL STORY

BLUE PRINT FOR SELECTING PARASITE RESISTANT SHEEP: A SHEPARD’S PERSPECTIVE

KATHY BIELEK

 The concept of selecting parasite resistant sheep is simple: consistently select the animals with the best resistance. Putting the concept into practice, however, can be more challenging. This paper will share some of the lessons learned over the last 10 years through several North Central Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (NC SARE) grants and on-farm experience. A list of the SARE grants and the breeders involved is included at the end of this blueprint.

 FULL STORY

BEDDING OPTIONS FOR LIVESTOCK AND EQUINE

In general, bedding for an animal must be comfortable, clean, and absorbent. There are several materials, both organic and inert, that may be used for bedding, and most may be used for all types of livestock. When organic materials are used, ammonia volatilization is reduced, improving the air in the housing facility. Bedding, as with other aspects of livestock management, can be manageable through proper care and attention. In the case of milking, pregnant, nursing, or very young livestock, specific attention to bedding is required. These four categories of animals are the most susceptible to disease.

 FULL STORY

LOW INPUT LAMBING & KIDDING:

This resource guide is a compilation of anecdotal recommendations gleaned from participating farmers and our own experiences. Chapter 1 is a general overview of the relationships between management inputs at birthing, season of birthing, mortality rates and herd performance. Chapter 2 discusses specific management practices as they relate to lowering inputs for barn lambing and kidding but is applicable in many cases to pasture birthing. Chapter 3 centers on management considerations to lower inputs during pasture birthing while still ensuring good animal welfare.

 FULL STORY