Early Lactation Considerations


Ewes will produce milk to according to the lambs needs. If the lambs do not nurse then the ewe will not produce that much. The ewe must be stimulated to produce milk. Ewe's that are nursing singles will adjust their milk production down; whereas, ewe's nursing twins will increase their production by twenty to fourty percent more, thus requiring greater needs nutritionally. You should separate ewe's that are nursing singles, twins, and triplets in separate areas so that each group gets the nutritional requirements that they need. Each group will have a different requirement nutritionally.

High-producing ewes require a high about of energy but are unable to consume enough to prevent weight loss. But because of the ewe storing fat during the last part of gestation, the ewe is able to utilize the fat stores in her body to meet the high energy needs for milk production. The ewes will lose between 1.0 and 2.0 units during this phase, so having a good nutritional plan during late gestation is required. Body fat can only be used for milk production if the ewes are absorbing the required amounts of amino acids. Making sure that the ewe is getting quality and quantity of protein intake is of top importance.