Sunday, 1 May 2011

Homemade Creep Feeder

The lambs are now two weeks old, the initial hurdle passed. All five appear to be thriving. Annie is doing remarkably well in feeding and mothering her triplets. Both ewes are getting extra hard feed and ad lib hay but as the grass grows they are beginning to show little interest in either.

As an extra precaution we have started to feed the lambs creep. Not something we have done before but then we have never had triplets before and realistically we don't have enough land to support 7 sheep alongside the other livestock.

Yesterday we made a prototype creep feeder. A little rough and ready as we expected to have to make alterations but as it was, this morning when we tried it for the first time, the lambs went straight in and started to nibble at the feed, returning on several occasions.

We need no greater approval than that.


Anonymous said...

looks good - what are you feeding them?

Sandra said...

Baby lamb pellets. They appear to like them.

Marianne said...

Hi Sandra, looks like you are having much more success with your creep pen. We've tried 2 homemade versions and this year found one to buy used and just as with the other years, we got it all set up and our ewes suck in their 4 stomachs and squeeze right through the bars. Ewes on the inside, lambs on the outside. I was wondering what type of ewe is in the picture with your beautiful lambs. She looks similar to our Romney/Lincoln crosses.
All the best...Marianne

Sandra said...

Hi Marianne,

The ewe in the photo ( Freda) is from a Shropshire ewe and Jacob ram.I only have two ewes the other (Annie) is a Zwartbles.

Freda isn't that keen on hard feed but Annie, despite her size can squeeze in almost anywhere for food.

If only her tongue was just a tiny bit longer she would be able to reach the lambs feed. :-)

Bernadette said...

We're in the middle of our first lambing and have been humming/hawing over possible creep feeders. Yours looks great but I'm worried my suffolks girls might/would destroy it to get at the feed. Is yours still standing? Any hind-sight modifications? I don't want to have to fork out money for a factory made one. Thanks for your input!

Sandra said...

Hi Bernadette, Yes the feeder is still standing and in one piece. We are amazed it has worked so well to be honest.

Intially we gave the lambs a feeder on the floor but realised within minutes it was not such a good idea and have since made a trough that hooks onto the back.

Now the lambs have grown we need to extend the length of the trough so all 5 can feed at once.This will mean blocking off one of the end panels otherwise Annie the greediest ewe will be able to reach the trough.

Annie is a Zwartbles , so very large and has so far been unable to destroy the feeder, the back is, however tight against a fence so she can't 'up end' it.

Good luck with yours.