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Flock Health Checklist - Breeding Period and Pregnancy

Flock Health Checklist
The Breeding Period and Early Pregnancy

The pre-breeding period is a great time to make sure your ewes and rams are as fit and healthy as possible. 

Below is an introduction to each of the stages covered in the breeding and early pregnancy section. To access the full information, and complete your own checklist, speak to your vet today.

Before Breeding

The benefits of planning for pregnancy are numerous: compact lambing period, reduce risk of ewe losses and achieve a healthy, less stressful lambing period to name just a few!

Group of sheep in a field

Plan Ahead to Prevent Abortion

Infectious abortion is a significant cause of lamb loss between tupping and lambing.

Learn about ways in which you can prevent abortion on your farm and effective vaccines that are available to reduce the risk of abortion.

Plan For Good Ram Fertility

Performing an MOT on all your rams at least 8 weeks pre-breeding will identify the vast majority of problems.

This section on ram fertility advises what to look out for, and how your vet can offer support in managing rams.

Remember to include rams in all your routine treatment regimens: it’s surprising how often they get forgotten about!

Image of ram

The average breeding time a ram lasts on UK farms is 3.8 years1, however if your rams are fit, healthy and well cared for, they should last much longer.

The Breeding Period

Ensure the ram:ewe ratio is appropriate – mature rams that have passed their MOT and are in good condition should be easily capable of serving up to 80 ewes.

Keep a close eye on your rams to ensure they’re working, and to diagnose and treat any problems promptly.

Early Pregnancy

Throughout pregnancy, the adult flock should be fed to maintain their Body Condition Score (BCS). 

The Flock Health Checklist provides guidance on how to achieve this, and other common issues to look out for in the early pregnancy stages.

Flock of sheep in a field

Speak to your vet and book in a Flock Health Checklist consultation today!


1. Phillips K, Stubbings L, Lewis C, Stocker P. Improving the Welfare and Longevity of Rams in Commercial Sheep Flocks. NSA Survey with Animal Welfare Foundation conducted 2016/17


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