Achieve success feedlotting lambs

Nov 21, 2022 | Sheep

Achieve success feedlotting lambs

Finishing lambs can be a profitable operation, but it depends on how you manage your animals. Lambs can be finished in extensive systems such as on pastures and veld, or in intensive systems like feedlots. 

Here we look at feedlotting lambs and which factors impact your success, namely genetic potential of the lambs, their nutrition and the feedlot infrastructure. 

While many farmers believe that certain breeds outperform others in a feedlot, a lamb of any breed can perform well if it has the correct genetic potential

These lambs need to have good muscle conformation, which means 

  • Good hindquarters
  • Length of body
  • Depth of body

Nutrition also plays a vital role in the success of your operation, and your lambs will respond either positively or negatively to the ration they are being fed. This means that the feed needs to be balanced and have the following characteristics:

  • Be high in energy 
  • Have high protein content 
  • Contain minerals and trace minerals
  • Have good digestibility

When it comes to the infrastructure of the feedlot, the following factors need to kept in mind.

  • Each lamb will need trough space of at least 10 cm
  • Clean, cool water is essential and will have to be provided
  • The troughs should be cleaned daily 
  • The surface area of the pen should be between 1.5 – 2.5 square metres per lamb and shade should be taken into account as well .

For more information watch the video below, where Dr Vlok Ferreira, ruminant nutritionist for RCL Foods, discusses the factors that influence your chance of finishing lambs in a feedlot, as well as the influence of nutrition on your feedlot operation. 


If you would like to learn more about the correct supplementation, contact your nearest Molatek Technical Advisor.


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