When to take the Ram out?

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2 years 7 months ago #556344 by Dr Spock
Hi all. I left my ram in with my ewes since tupping time in March so he is now in with the ewes and their lambs which are still feeding off their mums. If I don't want lambs born before September next year, when should I take him out? I've read they start mating according to length of day but is that short or long day length. Do I need to worry about the ewe lambs?
Thanks

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2 years 7 months ago #556345 by tonybaker
Replied by tonybaker on topic When to take the Ram out?
I have always left the ram in with the ewes and never had any problems. Usually lamb around end of August and note that some ewes are always earlier than others.

5 acres, Ferguson 35X and implements, Hanmay pto shredder, BMW Z3, Countax ride on mower, chooks, Dorper and Wiltshire sheep. Bosky wood burning central heating stove and radiators. Retro caravan. Growing our own food and preserving it. Small vineyard, crap wine. :)
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2 years 7 months ago #556346 by Stikkibeek
Depends a little on the breed as some breeds can cycle all year, but standard breeds cycle when the days begin to shorten so if you are happy with the time of year your ewes lambed this season, then follow the same plan, otherwise leave him out for a while longer is you want them to lamb later.
He will likely need some company if he is on his own.

Did you know, that what you thought I said, was not what I meant :S
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2 years 7 months ago #556349 by lucill
Replied by lucill on topic When to take the Ram out?
I've never had luck leaving the ram in with the flock. He didn't mate any ewes besides one of our neighbour's that jumped the fence! I now keep the ram/s apart from the ewes in their own "ram paddock". 4-6 weeks before mating I take the ewes away so they are out of sight, sound, and smell of the ram/s. When I bring the ewes back, lots of them cycle at the same time so my lambing period is short.
You should probably take your ram out in around February, as they usually breed March-May time. Mid-April mating will give you early to mid-September lambs. You won't have to worry about him breeding his daughters if he's left in until they're about 6 months old.

44 acres, carrying 21 beef cattle & a breeding flock of Wiltshire and Damara sheep.
1 pet steer, a dog, and a cat.
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2 years 7 months ago #556353 by LongRidge
Replied by LongRidge on topic When to take the Ram out?
Did the ewes lamb in September this year? Were the early ones singles or twins?
If I was really concerned, which I used to be, I would take him out soon onto very good pasture. The fertility of a male ruminant depends on how much sperm storage he has, and that depends on how well fed he is. If he has fewer than about 20 ewes then this is not so important,
If the ewes lambed in September this year then you could risk leaving him in until mid-January, especially if the earlies were and still are mothers of twins. If the singles were the first to lamb then caution suggests taking him out earlier, say late December.
We always use two or three rams these days, even for only 20 ewes. We once had a ram that did a good job one year and nothing the next. Another time we had two rams like that - fortunately the third ram got them. But we do not put all the rams with all the ewes - that leads to massive fighting. So we have 3 flocks being mated, and another flock of lambs which are weaned mid January at the latest.
Flushing the ewes, as described by lucill is well worth doing. Our very good sheep vet also suggested that a ram be put into the flock for 24 hours about 2 weeks before tupping. One or two might get pregnant then, but most will get pregnant soon after the rams are put out.
We got thoroughly sick of overfeeding single bearing ewes, underfeeding twins, and not knowing which were empty. So we found it exceedingly beneficial to scan the ewes 82 days after the ram had been put in. And the rams were with the ewes for 54 days maximum.
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2 years 7 months ago #556377 by Inger
Replied by Inger on topic When to take the Ram out?
Take him out when you wean the lambs and keep him with the wethers for company. We put our rams in with the ewes at the beginning of March, so the lambs are born end of September - beginning of October. Hopefully when the weather is better. This year it wasn't. :(

45 hectares between Whangarei and Paparoa. Registered Dexter cattle, Wiltshire sheep - black, white & pied.
New Hampshire Red poultry & Dorking poultry. Pilgrim Geese, Appleyard Ducks.
A cat called Pusscat and still looking for another heading dog.
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