Scottish sheep farmers are being invited to join a webinar addressing issues that have faced the 2023 lamb crop, including high worm burdens and feed costs.
SAC Consulting, part of Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC), will hold the online webinar on 18 January following a year which led many lambs to underperform.
An especially high parasite burden, the quality and price of feedstuffs and the ongoing wet weather are seen as key factors in many lambs struggling to thrive as they would usually.
SAC Consulting's webinar will discuss information for producers who faced these challenges in 2023.
The aim is to help them to enhance efficiency and production before taking them to market over the coming weeks and months.
Kirsten Williams, senior sheep consultant at SAC Consulting, said experts will offer guidance to producers in maximising the potential from the 2023 lambs.
“It’s just been one of those years with numerous challenges,” she said, “When it comes to parasites, a large part of the problem has been the weather pattern.
"The warm and moist weather we have experienced in Scotland has provided ideal conditions for a continuous worm cycle.
"It has also contributed to the high number of cases of fly strike, which has set many lambs back in their growth.”
Producers looking to reduce input costs may have delayed introducing concentrate feed, or tried cheaper food sources, she noted.
This has resulted in nutritional requirements not being quite as balanced as they might have otherwise.
“Some farmers will have either planned to keep lambs later or purchased long keep lambs to finish for the Ramadan and Easter markets in late March or early April, which will be here before we know it," Ms Williams explained.
"Ensuring lambs are growing on for this requires really good health and nutrition, and we hope the experts we have speaking at this webinar will help farmers to put that into place.”
The free webinar, entitled Lamb Finishing, starts on 18 January at 7.30pm. Prior registration is necessary.