Optigain; “Easy Feeding.”

High in Pembrokshire, just outside Fishguard, Vivian Davies and his family tend to their farm of 900 sheep and 36 sucklers. This has been a family affair since 1939 and now the 4th generation tends to the stock on the farms 340 acres of hillside.

vivian-davies-farm

The flock is made up of a mix of Texel Cross/Mules and Texel Cross/Charollais, mainly from Texel rams, all showing good growth rates, condition and performance. A change over the past 12 months, introducing the Innovis breeding system to further improve market weights is showing some promising initial results.

Getting that little bit more from the flock is one of the reasons Vivian and his son started to  look at supplementation during key times of the season. They needed something which was practical and reliable, while making a difference to their livestock’s health,  fitting nicely into the lambing system they work too. Their lambing system co-ordinates tupping so that they lamb in batches across 3 months,  helping them to manage the limited pen space they have available. It also enables them to tup and lamb all 900 ewes without it being too stressful, making sure they are giving the ewes and lambs the attention they need to ensure low mortality rates, weak lambs not being lost among a multitude of lambs born in one sitting.  Using a drench, like Optigain allows them to closely observe and handle each animal in turn so they can see and feel the condition and vigour. Each animal can be assured they are getting the nutrients they need as each feed is individually administered.

peter-lewis sheepwithcopper5l

After canvasing a few farmers in the area, Vivian decided on Optigain Sheep + Copper from Peter Lewis Agri & Equi Supplies. “The reputation of an easy feeding formula which was not thick and brown made this product the obvious choice. As a test it was first used on the ewe’s pre-tupping. Feeding was found to be no problem at all,  the dosing programe has been rolled out to also include lambs after they are a month old. The difference in using a drench which is free flowing is clear, the health of my applicator gun is also improved.” Said Vivian.

vivian-davies-and-family

Vivian Davies and his family

Vivian added; “We are currently in the middle of the second batch of next seasons ewe’s and they have already had their pre-tupping feed of Optigain, the aim being to support ovulation ready for the tup to get the highest possible scanning rates. The last batch, made up of the final 400 ewes is due now, as they will being going to the tup in October.

Through supplementation and the recent change in the breeding system we are hoping for an extra kilo on top of our 21kg deadweight target this year. Based on this Vivian is delighted with his stock and looking forward to a great next seasons lambing”.

Optigain Sheep +Copper

Provides ewe’s and rams with a comprehensive blend of vitamins and trace elements including a unique combination of selenium and natural vitamin E required for the support of fertility, condition and on-going performance.

Optigain is available from your local Downland retailer, for further information click here.

24th November 2016