27 Aug 2011

Snowstorms hit dairy calving more than lambing

5:30 pm on 27 August 2011

A company that collects and processes dead lambs and calves says last week's snowstorms probably did more damage to dairy calving than to lambing.

The snow was too early to affect lambing in most of the South Island, but calving on dairy farms was hitting its peak.

The Southland firm Slinkskins estimates calving losses would have been 10% to 20% above the normal attrition rate.

Manager Ray Watson says the normal casualty rate of newborn lambs or calves is about 10%.