My new scale got here yesterday. Wow, that was quick. I'm going to try to get it set up this weekend. Pullo and Damascus are both going to the locker on Monday, I'm curious to see how much they weigh before they go bye-bye.
On the parasite front, this is usually the time of the year when internal parasites are at their worst. We have had one heck of a damp, moist, muddy, rainy summer. Great for the pasture, bad for hay-making, and the absolute worst for parasites.
I am happy to say that we have no coccidiosis in our fecals this year, NONE, thanks to preventative treatment that started back in March.
Our heavy cull last year paid off. This year, I have very few sheep showing signs of parasites.
Parasite resistant sheep are special sheep. They don't carry as much of a load as the non-resistant, wormy sheep do. A small percentage of your sheep will carry the most parasites.
Being parasite resistant is a heritable trait, you can breed for it!
This article is the best I have read on parasite resistance in sheep.
Do yourself and your sheep a big favor. Print this article out, read it, re-read it, so you can have a happy, hardy, thrifty, healthy flock of parasite resistant Shetland sheep. Develop a relationship with your sheep vet, fecal test regularly. Practice "Smart Drenching", don't overuse dewormers, or under-dose.
Non-resistant worms are your friend, as funny as that sounds. Keep the strong, resistant sheep, and their weak, wimpy worms, for breeding.
This will also save you money on pricey dewormer.
I'm also going to experiment with DE. I used to give it to my chickens. I liked the idea of a mechanical, yet safe, dewormer. I ordered a 50 lb bag. I'm planning on mixing it with baking soda and offering it free choice, since I'm not feeding grain right now. Any advice on using DE?