- 1 The gestation period of the ewe
- 2 signs of lamb pregnancy
- 3 The importance of early detection of ewe pregnancy
- 4 Taking care of the ewe during pregnancy
The duration of pregnancy of the ewe
The normal pregnancy period for ewes usually extends approximately 147 days, and childbirth occurs at any time between 144 to 152 days from the beginning of pregnancy, and the duration of pregnancy depends on several factors, the most important of which are the following:
- Ewe breed: Medium wool and meat sheep breeds usually have a shorter gestation period than fine wool breeds.
- Temperature and feeding level: High temperature and excessive feeding during pregnancy lead to an early delivery date between two to three days.
- The type of ram mated with the ewe: The pregnancy period of ewes mated with a white-faced wool ram is longer than the gestation period of ewes mated with a black-faced meat ram.
Signs of lamb pregnancy
There are some signs that indicate a lamb pregnancy, the most important of which are the following:
- The ewe does not go through the menstrual period at its usual time, as it is supposed to be repeated every 17 days.
- Swelling of the genital opening, which occurs after 6 weeks of pregnancy.
- The belly swelled in the twelfth week, and at this stage the ewe shows calmness and walks slowly.
The importance of early detection of ewe pregnancy
Studies conducted at North Dakota State University revealed the need for early detection of ewe pregnancy. This is to ensure that they obtain the appropriate nutritional needs for them, especially since the lack of nutrition of the ewes during pregnancy or more than they need have great effects on the lambs. A proper weight. Pregnancy can be detected by an ultrasound examination, or a blood test that can detect pregnancy with an accuracy of up to 98% after 30 days of pregnancy.
Ewe care during pregnancy
Ewes during pregnancy need special care, so sheep breeders are advised to:
- Protecting ewes from exposure to stress or difficult situations, including attacks from dogs that force them to run.
- Providing ewes with appropriate food.
- Gently get rid of external parasites, and make sure to read the instructions for using internal anti-parasites well before use
- Giving ewes a comprehensive annual vaccination to protect ewes and lambs from infection with Clostridium.
- Vaccinate all ewes against worms from mid-March until mid-April, and give an additional dose to ewes expected to be born in mid-June.