Market Lamb Essentials
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Market Lamb Essentials

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Market Lamb Essentials Market Lamb Essentials Presentation Transcript

  • Market Lamb Essentials Texas 4-H and Youth Development
  • Topics to Discuss
    • The following topics will be discussed:
    • Selection
    • Validation
    • Facilities and Equipment
    • Nutrition, Management, Exercise
    • Health
    • Fitting and Showing
    Texas 4-H and Youth Development
  • Selection
    • Classification
    • Four major breed classifications:
      • Fine wools (Rambouillet, Delaine-Merino, Hampshire
      • Fine wool crosses (first cross between a finewool and a medium wool, usually a suffolk or Hampshire)
      • Medium wools (predominately Suffolk, Hampshire, and crosses among them)
      • Southdown
    Texas 4-H and Youth Development
  • Selection cont.
    • Classification cont.
    • Lambs classified by a 3 person committee
    • Agents should be aware of market lamb classification guidelines that were modified in 2007
    • Classification determined by genetic makeup and physical characteristics of lamb which include:
      • Color markings
      • Physical structure
      • Skeletal shape
      • Feel (softness of pelt)
    • Select lamb that you know will classify!!
    Texas 4-H and Youth Development
  • Selection cont.
    • Age of Lamb
    • Fall Born
      • Finewool and finewool cross lambs born for summer shows are born October to December
    • Spring Born
      • Lambs for winter and spring shows are generally born February to April
      • Medium wool and Southdown lambs born in the spring, some born in January, are more mature, and preferred for summer and fall shows.
      • Spring born can also work for summer and fall shows but exhibitors may run into weight and maturity problems.
    • Dallas, Odessa, Fort Worth, and San Antonio require lambs to have their baby/milk teeth (will normally lose at 12 -14 months) at show time.
    • All shows have minimum weight limits and most have maximum weight limits.
    Texas 4-H and Youth Development
  • Selection cont.
    • Quality Considerations
    • Selection criteria:
      • Muscle
      • Structural correctness
      • Style and Balance
      • Growth potential
    • Be aware of wool length and fatness
    • If possible select lambs after shearing
    • Young bloomy lambs that are fat always look better than thin lambs.
    • Be able to recognize muscle over fat.
    Texas 4-H and Youth Development
  • Selection cont.
    • Where to Purchase Lambs
    • Private treaty or through sales
    • Fall born lambs sold generally in March and April
    • Spring born lambs sold generally May through August
    • Breeders information found in magazines like “The Showbox” and “The Purple Circle”
    Texas 4-H and Youth Development
  • Validation
    • Lambs must be state validated in June for the State Fair of Texas and in October for the major winter shows (Odessa, Fort Worth, San Antonio, San Angelo, Houston, and Austin).
    • Most county shows require lambs to be state validated
    • Tags for State Fair of Texas are ordered last of April and tags for major winter shows are ordered first of September through Dr. Frank Craddock in San Angelo.
    • Star of Texas Fair in Austin lambs must have been bred and born in Texas and have Texas Lamb Breeders Association (TLBA) tags recorded on their validation forms.
    Texas 4-H and Youth Development
  • Facilities and Equipment
    • Barn should have at least 20 sq. feet of space per lamb, well ventilated, well drained, and open to south and/or east.
    • Does not have to be elaborate.
    • Lambs must be kept cool in summer and warm in winter.
    • Pen height should be 42 inches high and made to keep predators out.
    • Portable feed trough should be hung at the height as the top of the shoulder and cleaned daily.
    • Fresh water most important ingredient when feeding lambs.
    • Water trough must be cleaned and drained daily.
    Texas 4-H and Youth Development
  • Facilities cont.
    • Other equipment needed:
      • Stiff brush
      • Shovel
      • Trimming table
      • Electric clippers with proper combs and cutters
      • Small wool card
      • Syringes and needles
      • Blankets and/or socks
      • Rope halters
      • Hoof trimmers
      • Hand shears
      • Drench gun
      • Small portable feed trough
      • Water bucket
      • Show box
      • Hot air blower
      • Portable livestock scale
      • Extension cord
      • Muzzles
      • Electric fan
    Texas 4-H and Youth Development
  • Nutrition, Management and Exercise
    • NO special diets needed!!
    • Feeding Schedule, Exercise Program, and Careful Observation during growing and finishing stages = Champions
    • Basic nutrients needed in a diet:
      • Water
      • Protein
      • Carbohydrates and fats (energy)
      • Minerals
      • Vitamins
    • Rations should be between 14-17% protein.
    Texas 4-H and Youth Development
  • Nutrition, Management, and Exercise cont.
    • Should eat 2-3% of their body weight per day
    • Weight lambs regularly
    • Feeding and exercise go hand in hand
    • Exercise is an excellent way to condition and tone lambs.
    • Should be exercised extremely hard 300 -400 yds. for short distances
    • Exercise should begin 2-3 months before show.
    • Refer to 4-H Club Lamb Guide for more information on exercise.
    Texas 4-H and Youth Development
  • Health
    • Developing preventative health program key to healthy lamb.
    • Two major problems in lambs:
      • Enterotoxemia (overeating) – give one shot followed 3 weeks later by booster shot
      • Internal parasites – drench lambs upon arrival followed by another drenching 3 weeks later
    • Regular hoof trimming necessary
    • Always follow drug labels when administering drugs.
    • Using drugs other than what is authorized is unethical and against the law.
    • Most livestock shows have strict drug policies.
    Texas 4-H and Youth Development
  • Fitting and Showing
    • More than just shearing is required.
    • Lambs should be shorn several times before show.
    • Wash and shear lambs as close to show as possible
    • Leave hair above the leg (called boot)
    • Cover lambs immediately after shearing to keep warm
    • Lambs must be halter broken, and taught to lead, set up their legs, and how to brace for show.
    • Showmanship clinics should be implemented by County Extension Agents
    Texas 4-H and Youth Development
  • For more information refer to 4-H Show Lamb Guide By Frank Craddock and Ross Stultz Texas 4-H and Youth Development
  • Additional questions to ask exhibitors
    • What are the goals of the 4-H member and family?
    • What shows or time of the year will you exhibit the project(s)?
    • Will you need assistance in locating and selecting your project?
    Texas 4-H and Youth Development
  • Conclusions
    • All aspects of the selection process should be understood. (classification, age, quality, where to purchase)
    • Exhibitors and County Extension Agents must follow all validation rules and regulations.
    • Proper facilities should be available.
    • Proper diets and nutritional information about feeding lambs should be identified.
    • Health is one of the most important aspects of raising market lambs.
    • Success is a direct reflection of the management practices that take place.
    • All rules must be followed. Ignorance is no excuse!
    Texas 4-H and Youth Development