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Virginia Cooperative Extension -
 Knowledge for the CommonWealth

Sheep Update

Livestock Update, August 2003

Scott Greiner, Extension Animal Scientist, Sheep, Virginia Tech

2003 Virginia Ram Lamb Performance Test and Sale
The Virginia Performance Tested Ram Lamb Sale will be held at the Virginia Sheep Evaluation Station near Steeles Tavern on Saturday, August 23, starting at 1:00 p.m. The barn will be open to buyers beginning at 9:00 a.m. The rams recently completed a 63-day gain test with the following performance results:

 63-day Test ADG
3 Dorper 0.84
9 Fall Dorset 0.78
5 Winter Dorset 0.84
6 Hampshire 1.02
4 Fall Suffolk 0.76
41 Winter Suffolk 0.89
68 Total Rams 0.88

The top 60 rams based on performance will be offered for sale. All rams sold will be evaluated for structural and reproductive soundness, and will be sold as guaranteed breeders. All rams have been genotype tested to be free of the spider gene, and codon 171 scrapie resistance genotypes will be published. Complete performance information will be available, including ultrasound measurements for carcass traits. The Virginia Sheep Evaluation Station is located at the Shenandoah Valley Agriculture Research and Extension Center, .5 mile east of I-81 at Exit 205. For sale information and a catalog, contact Scott Greiner, Department of Animal and Poultry Sciences, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA, 24061, phone (540)231-9163.

2003 Sheep Management Basics Workshop Scheduled for October 9-10
The annual Virginia Tech Sheep Management Basics Workshop is scheduled for Thursday and Friday, October 9-10, 2003. The workshop will be held at the Copenhaver Sheep Center at Virginia Tech. This workshop is designed for individuals with a limited amount of experience in the care and management of sheep. Special emphasis will be placed on lambing-time management. Participants will get hands-on experience with a group of ewes that will be lambing during the two-day workshop. Other areas to be covered include Facilities and Handling, Baby Lamb Management, Flock Health, Flock Nutrition & Feeding Management, Breeding Management, Basic Record Keeping & Selection, and Lamb Marketing. This workshop is limited to a maximum of 25 participants. The cost is $40 per person. The first 25 preregistrants will be enrolled (deadline September 15). First-time participants will be given preference. To preregister for the workshop, contact: Dr. Scott Greiner, Department of Animal & Poultry Sciences, Virginia Tech, 366 Litton-Reaves Hall, Blacksburg, VA 24061, phone 540-231-9163.

Sheep Management Basics Workshop Registration Form (PDF)

2003 Eastern Stud Ram Sale Results
The 62nd Annual Eastern Stud Ram Show and Sale was held June 13-14 at the Augusta Expoland near Staunton. The show was held on Friday with over 300 sheep exhibited. Wilson Stock Farm of Rural Retreat, VA exhibited the Champion Hampshire Ewe and Champion Hampshire Ram. Sponaugle Suffolks from Grottoes, VA exhibited the Champion Suffolk Ram. Champion Ram honors in the Polled Dorset show went to Wade Brothers of Greeneville, VA. A total of 269 sheep sold for an average of $371 per head. Sale results, including price and number sold by sex for each breed were as follows:

Breeding Sheep
Hampshire $270 (19) $338 (26)
Polled Dorset $521 (17) $497 (44)
Southdown $865 (5) $395 (12)
Suffolk $248 (11) $445 (14)
Wether Sires & Dams $482 (29) $287 (66)
All Breeding Sheep $432 (81) $374 (162)
Club Lambs$162 (26)

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