Ways of maximising your flock’s lambing percentages at tupping time

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Over the next two months MHC will be publishing an article every week in the Farming Life from a selection of different sheep farmers in Northern Ireland, and their experiences of maximising their flock potential pre tupping, writes Killian O’Briain (Managing Director of Mayo HealthCare).

We would like to thank in advance all of these customers who were kind enough to volunteer to share their results on their comparison against other boluses, or just against a control group. We will also like to thank our customers who used both our Bolus and High Energy drench with Minerals. 

We have over 30 years’ experience in working on livestock farms, with a special interest in fertility and lambing programmes, we work with veterinarians to share how we approach herd health through nutrition and managing energy deficits at critical times (pre Tupping and pre Lambing). In addition we are collaborating with National Universities to further research in these areas and on our own on-site lab. We always strive to provide the best solutions on farm, backed up by using scientific research, and not just what is the newest fad. 

We aim to produce the highest spec range of Trace Elements bolus on the market, to look after the long term essential mineral requirements of the ewe and lamb. MHC identified, using on site research, and data from different Agricultural Government agencies to find out what a ewe needs in a serious deficient environment for the minor micro elements pre-tupping. Our bolus is the insurance policy that every sheep farmer needs to look at. 

Currently we are the only long term bolus in Northern Ireland offering Zinc as an essential part of the mineral requirement for the ewe. The other most important elements are Iodine, Selenium, Copper (depending on the breed) and Cobalt.

 We matched all of the elements to the deficiencies of the ewe, and we discovered one major factor in the industry where we were able to match serious deficiencies, that was previously forgotten about. Although Cobalt is an expensive element to add to a bolus, it was identified that a ewe needs up to 2mg of cobalt a day when grazing cobalt deficient pastures. Currently in Northern Ireland we have nearly double the cobalt to the nearest comparable bolus available on the market. With economies of scale, we strive to provide great value boluses, actually matching the ewe’s requirement. 

A lot of our customers use our pre tupping mineral drench as an “Energy Booster” drench also. Apart from the extremely high levels of Chelated Minerals and vitamins, the major factor about the drench is the addition of Propene Glycol, which is pure energy to the ewe. This will make her “reproductive system” think she has the energy available to produce the maximum number of embryos, thus on average a better lambing percentage.