Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 30 of 47

Thread: Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

  1. #1

    Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

    Use charollais' for our rams on charollais x ewes. Need to get them a bit harder as we lamb outside on highish ground and they are just getting allergic to cold wet rain!. We are a closed flock so don't want to buy in any ewes really. Some ewe lambs are retained for replacements. Everything else sold fat. Charollais tups are
    Any ideas what we could use to cross to get a bit of hardness back into them??

  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    co.down
    Posts
    122

    Re: Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

    Cheviot or blackies

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Hereford
    Posts
    187

    Re: Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

    Chars are about the softest of the common breeds so take you pick, beltex are also soft. Suffolk lambs are fast growing but stupid, but may be a good mix. Texels are softish but smarter & lively. Lleyn are becoming popular but don't grow. Herdwick may be going too far.

    Hope you get a better answer from someone.

  4. #4
    Senior Member b slicker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Scottish Borders
    Posts
    1,003

    Re: Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

    Switch to Texel tups as soon as possible. And keep the females as replacements.

    How on earth did you get to the stage of 2/3 Charollais?

  5. #5

    Re: Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

    Got lleyns that may be used. Not a big fan of texels as they don't seem to get the weight on them like the charollais do on grass. Got a suffolk running with some ewes so maybe that will get back a bit of what we need.

  6. #6
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Dorset
    Posts
    178

    Re: Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

    What about a Dorset?

  7. #7
    Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Preston
    Posts
    37

    Re: Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

    I wemt to Innovis in west wales last month, what thet are doing is amazing, and could revolutionise the sheep indusrty in the next few years. If you wanyt hardy but very productive sheep check them out.

  8. #8
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    Wales
    Posts
    256

    Re: Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

    What part of the country ? and what type of land + altitude ?
    Come and stay in the Welsh hills, http://www.holidaycambriancoast.co.uk/

  9. #9
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    Ireland
    Posts
    164

    Re: Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

    I would defo go Suffolk if in your situation then in 2 or 3 years time when a lot of ewes would have a Suffolk streak in them i would go Texel or Dorset because you should produce big replacement ewes from a suffolk char cross and a texel or dorset will go well on them....dont keep dorsets as replacements though as they flush all year round and that can get tricky. Then in 6 or 7 years when you have a lot of texel and suffolk type ewes in your flock go back to charollais you need to vary it alot more

  10. #10
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Devon
    Posts
    372

    Re: Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

    If you go suffolk, be very careful what type you buy from whom. It will add zero to the lamb vigor and maternal abilities if you just buy the average uk suffolk out of a sale.

  11. #11
    Senior Member andybk's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Mendips Somerset
    Posts
    322

    Re: Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

    I would go poll dorset as well , three quarter dorset , back to a charollais is excellent carcase ,E grades arnt hard to get ,(and a probaly better lamb than pure chars ) dorset will add easy finish and MILK ,very hardy we used near bald chars in the early days lambed indoors in nov out at 48 hrs @ 750' dorset added the wool and she would dig through snow for grass , the cross is A world away from pure dorsets that can be a bit light weight and dopy at birth

  12. #12
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    yorkshire
    Posts
    22

    Re: Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

    I have some charollais cross Hampshire down ewes which are terrific they do every thing you want of a ewe and are very hardy here at a 1000 feet .The first cross lambs were good to finish quickly but when the ewes were put to a texel the lambs were even better and topped the live ring when sold fat.
    This year I ve put the ewes to a beltex so we'll see what that brings.

  13. #13
    Member Jem's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    SW Scotland
    Posts
    81

    Re: Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew100 View Post
    Chars are about the softest of the common breeds so take you pick, beltex are also soft..
    Eh? On what do you base this assumption? Beltex are well known for being hardy wee blighters when born - up and sucked very quickly. Had set of triplets born outside to a BFL ewe on one of wettest days ever in April and all were up and sucked and running on -despite their clueless mother

  14. #14
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Montgomeryshire
    Posts
    867

    Re: Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

    Quote Originally Posted by Jem View Post
    Eh? On what do you base this assumption? Beltex are well known for being hardy wee blighters when born - up and sucked very quickly. Had set of triplets born outside to a BFL ewe on one of wettest days ever in April and all were up and sucked and running on -despite their clueless mother
    I'd agree with you on the hardiness, but the OP has already discounted putting Texels into the mix as they are too slow growing off grass, so Belties........

  15. #15
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Montgomeryshire
    Posts
    867

    Re: Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

    Quote Originally Posted by Countrygirl View Post
    Use charollais' for our rams on charollais x ewes. Need to get them a bit harder as we lamb outside on highish ground and they are just getting allergic to cold wet rain!. We are a closed flock so don't want to buy in any ewes really. Some ewe lambs are retained for replacements. Everything else sold fat. Charollais tups are
    Any ideas what we could use to cross to get a bit of hardness back into them??
    Not just hardiness, but maternal traits would be worth putting in. I'd discount any terminal sire breed to go on your 1/2 & 3/4 bred ewes, and put a recorded maternal breed on your best ewes, then keep the Charollais as your terminal sire. Plenty of choice on selected maternals about these days, be that NZ (Suffolk, Texel or Highlander), Aberfields, Romneys, Lleyns or Durno whatsits. What do you fancy working with?

  16. #16
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Fermanagh
    Posts
    18

    Re: Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

    or Blue Leicester

  17. #17
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Montgomeryshire
    Posts
    867

    Re: Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

    Quote Originally Posted by Razor8 View Post
    or Blue Leicester
    I doubt they'd add a lot of hardiness to anything, would they?

  18. #18
    Member Jem's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    SW Scotland
    Posts
    81

    Re: Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

    Quote Originally Posted by NeilO View Post
    I doubt they'd add a lot of hardiness to anything, would they?
    Nope.

  19. #19
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Posts
    145

    Re: Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

    Quote Originally Posted by Razor8 View Post
    or Blue Leicester
    A blue faced Leicester x Charollais, now that would be some beast................................

  20. #20
    Senior Member Nithsdale Farmer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Dumfries-shire
    Posts
    470

    Re: Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

    Quote Originally Posted by Countrygirl View Post
    Got lleyns that may be used. Not a big fan of texels as they don't seem to get the weight on them like the charollais do on grass. Got a suffolk running with some ewes so maybe that will get back a bit of what we need.

    You already have the Lleyn, use him and retain the females - itl add milk, lambs, hardiness and thrift into your flock. There are other breeds will do same job, and im not advocating the lleyn to be a wonder sheep but if youve already got the blood on the farm, why not utilise it?!

    Quote Originally Posted by NZDan View Post
    A blue faced Leicester x Charollais, now that would be some beast................................

    Christ aye Dan..... i dare you to breed one and try take a pic of it before it dies!!
    If in doubt, yank it out!

  21. #21
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    North Yorkshire
    Posts
    175

    Re: Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

    The trendy notion of the moment is that sheep don't need wool, with beltex and texel breeders seemingly hell bent on breeding wool off their sheep . So, what's the job? Can a sheep stand up to a wet upland area with an open fleece or very short staple without a production penalty?

  22. #22
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    Wales
    Posts
    256

    Re: Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

    Quote Originally Posted by NZDan View Post
    A blue faced Leicester x Charollais, now that would be some beast................................
    A Pinkfaced Leicester.
    Come and stay in the Welsh hills, http://www.holidaycambriancoast.co.uk/

  23. #23
    Senior Member skoda's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Ruthin ,Denbighshire,N Wales
    Posts
    1,068

    Re: Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

    Quote Originally Posted by DBJ View Post
    A Pinkfaced Leicester.
    Insanity is doing the same thing, over and over again, but expecting different results.

  24. #24
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Montgomeryshire
    Posts
    867

    Re: Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

    Quote Originally Posted by mallarchy View Post
    The trendy notion of the moment is that sheep don't need wool, with beltex and texel breeders seemingly hell bent on breeding wool off their sheep . So, what's the job? Can a sheep stand up to a wet upland area with an open fleece or very short staple without a production penalty?
    The 'peelers' becoming so popular within the various Texel breeds have nothing to do with the wool shedders that TimW et al would promote. The peelers are desperately trying to breed tight skinned lambs out of long wool cross ewes, to give an impression of better fleshing. True wool shedding sheep have a fleece which sheds in the Spring/Summer, so are properly covered in the winter. Hair sheep will have a dense coat which will be every bit as weatherproof as an open woolled fleece.

  25. #25
    Senior Member b slicker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Scottish Borders
    Posts
    1,003

    Re: Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

    Quote Originally Posted by NeilO View Post
    I doubt they'd add a lot of hardiness to anything, would they?
    I sometimes wonder if some of you have any idea or knowledge about sheep.

    Why on earth do you think the BFL is the nationally acclaimed breed that it is? It's because it nicks with a lot of hill and upland breeds and produces a crossbred female which can have an even hardier constitution. A Mule out of a Blackface or a Swaledale (bred by hill farmers from the Highlands to down as far as Devon) has a will to live and produce which is at least as strong as that of its it's mother.

    I can't speak for The welsh or the Irish, but from what I see and hear, many of their hard-bitten hill and upland sheep farmers must be of the same opinion.;

  26. #26
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Montgomeryshire
    Posts
    867

    Re: Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

    Quote Originally Posted by b slicker View Post
    I sometimes wonder if some of you have any idea or knowledge about sheep.

    Why on earth do you think the BFL is the nationally acclaimed breed that it is? It's because it nicks with a lot of hill and upland breeds and produces a crossbred female which can have an even hardier constitution. A Mule out of a Blackface or a Swaledale (bred by hill farmers from the Highlands to down as far as Devon) has a will to live and produce which is at least as strong as that of its it's mother.

    I can't speak for The welsh or the Irish, but from what I see and hear, many of their hard-bitten hill and upland sheep farmers must be of the same opinion.;
    Although I obviously don't have any idea or knowledge about most things, would you say that the hardiness in those Supermules comes from the BFL, or from their hill bred dams?

    The OP was looking to improve hardiness in her sheep, do you really advocate the BFL as the ideal candidate for that?

  27. #27
    Senior Member b slicker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Scottish Borders
    Posts
    1,003

    Re: Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

    Quote Originally Posted by NeilO View Post
    Although I obviously don't have any idea or knowledge about most things, would you say that the hardiness in those Supermules comes from the BFL, or from their hill bred dams?

    The OP was looking to improve hardiness in her sheep, do you really advocate the BFL as the ideal candidate for that?
    You don't really understand this BFL/ Mule thing, do you. But I don't know anything about Gloucestershire. Although I know that Montgomeryshire used to be famous for its exceptional herds of British Friesians.

  28. #28
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Montgomeryshire
    Posts
    867

    Re: Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

    Quote Originally Posted by b slicker View Post
    You don't really understand this BFL/ Mule thing, do you.
    Nope. All I know is that they don't do what I want, well enough or cheaply enough. Had enough of various types over the years thank you, and chosen to look elsewhere and, most importantly, to close the flock so that I can control my selection criteria rather than relying on someone else breeding on cosmetics.

    Still, I'm not the OP. I still fail to see how the BFL is going to be her saviour.

  29. #29
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    Ireland
    Posts
    164

    Re: Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

    charmoise are a very very hardy breed

    can tend to breed small but shouldnt out of charollais ewes

    dont think you could really breed replacements from them though

  30. #30

    Re: Suggestions to get sheep hardier..

    A quick solution to getting your sheep hardier without really losing too much output would be to cross them with a Talybont Welsh - I'm told they are hard as nails, will scan 185%, good mothers/milk and will produce 40-45kg lambs that thrive on grass. Don't have any myself but spoken to quite a few farmers in Wales who swear by them for the reasons outlined above.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •