Sheep breeding is a very rapidly developing agricultural industry. Sheep are unpretentious animals, they can adapt to different climatic conditions, as they have a high level of endurance. The animals are ruminants, and their diet includes growing grazing feed. This option is considered economical, because when spring and summer time comes, there is no need to purchase additional feed for the animals.
What affects life expectancy?
Conditions of detention
It is necessary to create good conditions for the animal to have excellent health, active immunity and good weight gain.
In the premises that are intended for keeping these animals, there are special stalls. Stables are single and group.
- For one ram, the stall area should be at least three square meters.
- For one bright, the area is at least 1.6 square meters.
- For a young sheep, the area should be 2 square meters.
- For a female with lambs, it is imperative to select a stall that will stand separately. Its area must be at least 2.6 square meters. If there are many lambs, then each will require additional space - about 0.8 sq. m. The room where the sheep are located must be equipped with heating systems and ventilation.
Sheep love to walk in huge herds, they cuddle closely to each other, so they need to make a wide entrance to the dwelling. The sheep room must be equipped so that it is convenient to clean it up and ventilate it. If there is no fresh air in the room, then the appetite of the sheep deteriorates, immunity decreases, the quality of the wool decreases, and so on.
It is necessary to make sure that there is fresh air in the dwelling, but there are no drafts. For this reason, weathering windows should not have a gap. The best option is if the pen is located close to grazing.
Long troughs serve as drinkers and feeders. The calculation should be as follows: the length of the trough per individual is at least 36 cm.
To properly care for and maintain sheep, you need to pay direct attention to their nutrition. The diet of sheep affects the growth rate and productivity of animals. Care must be taken to ensure that the feed is of high quality, does not have unnecessary, unnecessary additives. It is recommended to feed these animals 4 times a day.
It is necessary to monitor the feeding regime. The basis of nutrition includes such components as hay and straw. As an additive, you need to give a juicy top dressing, such as silage or chopped root crops.
After the animals have eaten, they need to drink water, and then give them concentrates and roughage.
At nightfall, leave 2 bundles of hay in the stall for each sheep. You can add salt or dilute minerals in liquids to animal water. The water must be fresh: in the cooler seasons, one adult sheep drinks about 7 liters of water per day. If the month is too cold, then the liquid must be warmed up.
Keeping sheep in summer
Sheep are grazing animals; in spring and summer they always graze in meadows. The basis of the animal's diet is pasture. In the warmer months, green grass grows in the pasture. It is a necessary component for the good development of the animal.
There are several types of pastures:
- artificial pastures - a person himself can sow forage grasses on the site;
- natural areas are those places where grass grows without human intervention;
- pastures dominated by perennial plants;
- areas dominated by annual plants.
You need to know that not all sheep breeds can adapt if they switch from one type of feed to another. If the sheep are kept at home, then they need to be gradually adapted to green feed. But you need to know that not all growing herbs are suitable for sheep. For example, in places where there is dampness or in a wetland, it is strictly forbidden to graze sheep. If the sheep do not feed properly, they will develop various diseases. This will lead to the death of the sheep.
It is difficult to graze animals, because they have a highly developed herd instinct, and also animals are poorly oriented in space. For this reason, these animals can be grazed with the goats: the goats have a good orientation in the terrain. Thanks to herd instinct, sheep can follow the goats. Sheep have poor eyesight, so they stick closer to each other. But if you constantly graze sheep, and then feed them at home, then they will be able to remember the road.
In the summertime, animals can drink 11 liters of liquid in one day. Therefore, there should be a drinking bowl or reservoir near the pasture. In order for the animals to develop a regime, they need to be grazed strictly in time: from 5–6 am to 8–9 pm.
If individuals are kept for slaughter, then they must be kept in stalls year-round.
Features of winter content
During the winter, the sheep must be kept in a stable. During this period, you need to be especially good with animals. These animals can be resistant to high and low temperatures. Therefore, it is not necessary to intensively insulate their home.
In winter, pets eat pre-prepared hay and various types of food. For one animal, you need to prepare about 51 kilograms of hay and feed, and another 51 kilograms of concentrate. If there is not enough hay, then it must be replaced with oat, grain, or legume straw.
These animals can eat branch feed (brooms). The branches of such food must be harvested in the summer. It is better to use young branches that have green leaves.
The life span of an animal depends on several factors. The main ones are :
- belonging to the breed;
- components of the diet;
- sheep breeding conditions;
- special purpose.
English sheep could live to record numbers. For example, such a case was recorded when a sheep from an English breed was able to live to 29 years old, and at 28 years old she could even give birth to a healthy cub. This case is an exception.
Other sheep have lower indicators: animals at the age of 18–20 have already worn out their teeth, they cannot eat normally, this leads to the death of the sheep . If a herd of sheep grazes in an area where there is sandy soil, then the animals will wear off their teeth even faster.
If pets live in an industrial and in a subsidiary farm, then a person can follow their period of life. People can control peak productivity and targeting of sheep.
So, if you create ideal conditions for the animal, then its average life indicator will be considered to be the age of 24-26 years. But in practice, this result will be difficult to achieve. Most of these animals are bred for meat, milk and wool. Therefore, as soon as productivity falls, the pet may not be raised further, and this can lead to a reduction in its life.
When are sheep most productive?
These animals are bred to receive products from them.
There are three types of products:
Sheep products are well appreciated in the market and are in great demand.
An animal that is 2.5-3 years old is ideal for getting meat products from it. At this age, the sheep meat will be of the highest quality. After reaching 3 years of age, sheep meat is usually tough, tasteless.
The maximum level of productivity in sheep that are not bred for meat is considered to be the age of 7–8 years.
Sheep are considered the most profitable and profitable animals. Their sexual activity begins at the age of 6-7 months. But this age is considered too small, so the rams are not allowed near the females. You need to mate animals when they are 1 year old. But in this case, the sheep must have a mass of at least 70 percent of the adult. After fertilization, 5 months must pass, and after that the first lambing occurs.
The first-born female will be able to bring two lambs. A person either should not interfere at all, or he needs to observe the process from the outside . A farmer wishing to increase his herd should determine how many bright sheep and rams should be kept for mating.
The next time the female can give birth to 5 lambs. Romanov sheep have the highest productivity, since animals of this breed can give birth to triplets at once. And these cases are not rare.
A high level of milk production in sheep can occur by the age of 6–8, then it goes down. Because of this, the animal can be kept for up to 10-12 years.
If sheep are kept on a farm for wool production, then the maximum age of the animals should be 11-16 years.
Of course, the owner himself decides how long this or that animal will live on the farm.
Thus, the lifespan of the sheep will depend on the purpose of the person who is raising them. It is also necessary to take into account the living conditions of the sheep. If all the requirements for maintenance, quality of food and care are met, then a sheep can live up to 26 years. If there are no normal conditions for the life of sheep, then they will not be able to live even for 3 years, because their body will become weak and the animals can get sick and die.
For how many years the Romanov sheep live, see the next video.