Flocks set to make the most from genetics in workshop

Perthshire sheep farmer Emily Grant pictured on her farm near Redgorton. 'Picture by Graeme Hart.
Perthshire sheep farmer Emily Grant pictured on her farm near Redgorton. 'Picture by Graeme Hart.

A practical workshop to assist sheep producers in making the most from genetics and management to improve flock performance, is being held in Selkirk on August 28 by Quality Meat Scotland (QMS).

The farmer-focused workshop will be hands-on and practical. It will guide participants through identifying the best rams for flocks, ewe selection, ram MOTing, ewe body condition scoring, flock health and ewe nutrition pre and post-tupping.

The workshop will be led by sheep veterinary consultant Fiona Lovatt of Flock Health, a specialist in sheep health and production who works closely with veterinary surgeons, farmers, processors and retailers in both the UK and abroad.

Dr Lovatt will be joined by vet Dr Graham Baird, also a specialist in sheep health and production. Dr Baird has worked in mixed practice, as a small ruminant specialist for Zoetis and in SAC’s VI Centres in Inverness, St Boswells and Perth where he was involved in disease surveillance and health schemes.

Quality Meat Scotland’s enterprise profitability publication shows that better financial returns for breeding sheep enterprises are closely linked to production performance, for example, more lambs weaned per ewe and at heavier weights. Whilst each farm will have an environmental limit to production, improvements in flock performance can be achieved when the right genetics are combined with good ewe and tup management before and after mating.

The workshop starts at 10:30am with coffee, followed by a mix of practical sessions and presentations to cover the key topics. Lunch will be provided, and booking is essential.

Please note that clean clothing and disinfectable footwear must be worn. Please visit www.qmscotland.co.uk to book a space.