Optimising ewe reproductive performance in containment areas

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Due to recurring, often successive poor seasons, breeding ewes are increasingly being fed in containment areas before and during pregnancy. Reports on containment-fed ewes show generally ‘normal’ lamb marking rates, but they are variable with anecdotal reports of pregnancy rates < 50% to 95%. The reasons for this are unclear. Determining whether particular practices lead to reduced reproductive performance is an essential step in minimising risk and improving performance. Currently, the recommendations to industry for management of ewes when containment-fed are conflicting, and some are not evidence-based. This lack of understanding increases the risk of unnecessary costs, sub-optimal reproduction, poor ewe health and inferior welfare outcomes. The aim of this project was to identify feeding and other practices that could be managed to optimise reproductive performance whilst ensuring ewe welfare, and identify RD&A gaps.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationNorth Sydney
PublisherMeat and Livestock Australia
Commissioning bodyMeat and Livestock Australia
Number of pages79
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Grant Number

  • 103013


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