¿What does your sheep eat?
Please write it down.
Do you know why each of these foods is important to them?
|If you learn about nutrition you will know why food is important.|
WHAT IS NUTRITION?
Nutrition is a process by which a plant or animal obtains food and uses it.
Nutrition is important because satisfactory sheep production depends on it.
Food is all substance which an animal uses to build its body and to produce energy.
Nutrient is anything that provides nourishment.
Food contains nutrients.
TYPES OF NUTRIENTS
Animals need five types of nutrients:
2. Carbohydrates (starch)
Good nutrition depends upon getting adequate but not excessive, amounts of each type.
Each kind of food contains different types of nutrients.
Each food contains nutrients in different amounts.
Nutrientes are important.
Proteins: build the body.
Carbohydrates (starchy foods): give energy to the animal
Minerals: are essential for bone growth.
Vitamins: activate all body functions.
Water: sheep's body is mostly made up of water.
A well fed lamb
- grows more rapidly.
- can be bred at an earlier age.
- has a longer productive life span.
- is more resistant to diseases.
- requires less attention.
"Provide your sheep with nourishing feed."
If you understand nutrition you will:
Provide necessary nutrients at the right time
Proteins are important in
"Low protein intake reduces the sheep's appetite."
Proteins are found in:
This nutrient gives energy to the sheep.
Energy is needed for:
The sheep uses energy in anything it does.
This energy is provided by plants that contain carbohydrates (starch).
You may recognize legumes because they all have this kind of seed pod.
beans, sweet peas, peanuts, alfalfa, clover are all legumes.
Legumes are rich in carbohydrates and proteins.
The principal minerals needed
by a sheep are:
Calcium and phosphorus are essential to bone growth.
Salt is an appetizer as well as a nutrient.
Usually forage contains minerals.
But this is not enough.
A supplement is needed, especially salt.
Salt should be available at all times.
You can obtain calcium and phosphorus
You may grind bones.
You may grind oyster shells.
If not, you may buy them.
Sheep take minerals when they need to.
Vitamins are very important. They activate body processes.
Their absence produces
Vitamins are named by capital letters.
Vitamin A should be present in a sheep's diet.
Vitamin A prevents night blindness, dry sore eyes and infections.
Vitamin A is found in green vegetables.
Absence of this vitamin may be a problem during the dry season.
This vitamin is stored in the sheep's liver for several months.
A sheep's body is made of 30 parts of bone and
70 parts of water.
Low consumption of water will upset body processes and it can cause death.
Lambs and adults should always have water available.
Water should be clean, fresh and cool.
Let us see how much you have learned about these five nutrients.
Please choose the best feeding.
Good! Number 5 is the best feeding because it contains the five nutrients.
AND all GREEN VEGETABLES contain VITAMIN A.
FOOD AND THE PRODUCTIVE PROCESS
At first sight, animals just eat food.
But remember that:
particular nutrients are needed for different purposes.
The amount and the type of food also changes as the productive process changes.
We have related the types of nutrients and the purpose they serve.
Connect with a line those that correspond.
A balanced diet includes all of the five types of nutrients.
How do the nutritional needs change as the sheep goes through the productive process?
A mature sheep needs food to maintain its body. This food is called:
Maintenance requirement only serves to keep the animal alive.
Any productive activity needs extra amount of food.
Would you recommend feeding only the maintenance requirement during pregnancy?
(Mark your answer with a cross.)
If your answer was no, we agree.
Pregnancy, as any other extra effort, needs extra nutrition.
We will consider the following situations:
- The Pregnancy period
- The Lactation period
- The Growth period.
THE GESTATION PERIOD
Gestation or pregnancy is the growing of the fetus.
Fetus is the unborn lamb.
During gestation, the ewe needs extra nutrients.
Please fill in the blanks with the correct nutrient:
1) _______________ to build the body of the fetus.
2) _______________ to develop energy.
3) _______________ to build the bones of the fetus.
Extra food requirements during the first three months of pregnancy are small, but
Additional nutrients are very important during the last two months of pregnancy.
This is what happens:
The fetus grows rapidly during the last two months.
If you give your ewes some extra feed
rich in carbohydrates, proteins and
minerals, four to six weeks before lambing
you will have healthy and strong lambs.
Let us see how much you have learned about pregnancy.
Choose the correct answer:
|1)||Fetus is a||
new born lamb
Not born lamb
|2)||The nutrients that are important for the growing fetus are:||A||Proteins|
|3)||During the two last months of gestation the ewe needs:||A||Same amount of food|
|4)||A well fed ewe gives birth to:||A||healthy lambs|
Answers: 1) B 2) A,B,C 3) B 4) A.
THE LACTATION PERIOD
Lactation means milk production.
This is the most demanding period.
The ewe needs to:
maintain her body and
Look at the graph:
Proteins, starch and minerals are most important during the lactation period.
Important: The lack of salt makes a sheep lose its appetite! If it eats less, it will not be able to feed lambs adequately.
Give supplemental food to your ewe during lactation. If not:
- milk production will draw upon her reserves.
- if reserves decline, milk production declines rapidly.
- body condition will also deteriorate making next breeding difficult.
- less or poor milk production will not allow lambs to grow properly.
Let's sum up
- Before conception and after weaning, a sheep needs its maintenance dosis.
- During pregnancy, needs are higher, specially during the last months.
- Lactation is the most demanding period.
- The new born lambs need special feeding to grow strong, healthy and fast.
The following page summarizes what we have learned.
Let's consider a ewe that starts its gestation period (or pregnancy) at the beginning of February:
Where does the strong, big body of a mature sheep come from?
How can we help the new born animal to get there?
Growth is building muscles, bones, organs and different tissues.
- Proteins ------> muscles (meat).
- Minerals (specially calcium and phosphorus) ------> strong bones and teeth.
- Vitamins ------> activate the entire process.
And ... energetic food (starch) and clean fresh water, as always.
What is needed for:
Connect with a line.
To obtain satisfactory growth rates and healthy animals, provide your sheep with food rich in protein, calcium, phosphorus, salt and ensure basic energy and water supplies.
This is an investment. You will get healthy and productive animals.
(Feeding and Nutrition)
|Nutrients||What are they for||Where to get them||When an extra dose is needed|
|Proteins||Growth, body maintenance, reproduction-gestation (last 4 weeks), milk production||Green pastures, oil crop by-products, fishmeal, milk||Growth pregnancy milk production|
|Carbohydrates (starch)||Provides energy Maintenance of body heat, exercise, growth, reproduction, lactation||Grains, pastures, banana, root crops, hay and silage||Dry seasons, lactation, growth|
|Minerals||Bone growth, milk yield, general growth of lambs, body functions||Ground bones and seashells, commercial mixtures, salt||Make salt and mineral supplements available yearlong|
|Vitamins||Activate the entire process. Growth, reproduction.||Green pastures, hay, silage, milk||Vitamin A during dry season.|
|Water||An essential food for: Health, productivity, lactation, body functions.||Fresh clean water, milk and young green pastures.||Make available at all times.|
Fill in the blanks with one of the expressions in A.
Fill in the blanks with one of the expressions in B.