Livestock and Poultry

Sheep & Goats

Feed, whether purchased or produced on the farm, makes up a large part of the expenses incurred in sheep and goat production. For profitable production, proper feeding and year-round management are essential. Without proper nutrition, it is impossible to produce a high-percentage crop, wean heavy animals, and develop satisfactory flock replacements.

All sheep and goat producers should have a basic understanding of animal nutrition and should be familiar with common nutrition terms. Producers must also know the nutritional requirements of the animal at different stages of life.

The ideal nutrition program supports optimum production, is efficient and economical, and minimizes related problems. In order to understand the fundamentals of small ruminant nutrition, we must first know the nutrients essential for growth, production, and reproduction. These essential nutrients are:

  • Energy (fat and carbohydrates).
  • Protein.
  • Vitamins.
  • Minerals.
  • Water.

From: ANR-0812 - Nutrient Requirements of Sheep and Goats – Read More...

Alabama offers several economic and natural advantages for developing a profitable sheep flock: a mild, even climate free from great extremes of temperatures and plenty of green feed. Climatically, Alabama is almost ideal for sheep: there are only a few days of extreme heat in summer and only a few days of belowfreezing temperatures in winter- A bountiful supply of green feed can be grown every month of the year, which is essential for developing a profitable flock and industry.

The successful sheep producer, as well as the beginner, can soon adapt to conditions and develop a successful enterprise. But, regardless of previous experience, a successful producer must have a positive attitude about raising sheep.

A review of past figures reveals that in the early 1940s Alabama had quite a number of sheep. It is estimated that the number of sheep in Alabama exceeds 10,000 head today.

From: ANR-0678 - Sheep Production As An Alternative Enterprise – Read More...