9 Oct 2008

High lamb toll this season

12:57 pm on 9 October 2008

Constant wet weather in the South Island has taken its toll on new born lambs this season.

Slink Skins, a company that processes animal carcases for pelts and skins, says it has been collecting more dead lambs than usual from some parts of Canterbury and Southland.

Manager Ray Watson says a combination of wet ground conditions with little feed means ewes are dropping lambs and leaving them behind while they search for grass.

Meat & Wool New Zealand director and sheep farmer, Leon Black, says this season has been one of the worst he can remember: one property in western Southland reportedly lost 800 lambs in a single day.

He says Southland lambing numbers will be significantly down, with low survival rates coming on top of an already lower rate of conception.