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Mortality of foster lambs is higher than mother-reared lambs, so choosing the right method is important. In a survey of UK sheep farmers, wet fostering was the preferred method. Methods that rely on altering the smell of the lamb work more closely with the ewe’s own biology (wet fostering, skinning dead lambs, masking or transferring odours) and tend to be more successful than those that involve restraining the ewe for the lamb to suckle.  There were an assortment of tips for fostering lambs and managing weak or orphan lambs at the recent SheepNet workshops in Italy, Spain and Romania.

 

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