Allotment Gardening Advice Help Chat

Smallhold Farming and Rural Living => Livestock and Growing on a larger scale => Topic started by: nuzuki on March 06, 2013, 11:55

Title: How much to pay for sheep? Whats a good price?
Post by: nuzuki on March 06, 2013, 11:55
Im interested in some sheep, maybe 2 minimum or maybe 6 maximum but probably 4. I would like to have a go at lambing on a small scale and raise them for meat for myself. I have access to just under an acre plot of land to put them on and am currently securing the fencing and building them a shelter.

Can anyone tell me what is a good price for sheep/lambs? which do I look for? I know a local farmer who is willing to lend me a ram but wouldnt mind raising my own ram if its something i'll be involved with for some time to come.

Any help would be greatful, particulary with prices.

Thanks
Title: Re: How much to pay for sheep? Whats a good price?
Post by: arugula on March 06, 2013, 12:27
Price will depend very much on breed, as will whether they need a shelter or not or would be better off outside.
Title: Re: How much to pay for sheep? Whats a good price?
Post by: John on March 06, 2013, 12:39
If you've not got a trusted friend who can sell them, then check out your local livestock market. I think a ewe will start from 60 to 100 but too many variables (age, breed, quality) to fine down an exact price on a forum
Title: Re: How much to pay for sheep? Whats a good price?
Post by: Kate and her Ducks on March 06, 2013, 18:40
How long's a piece of string?!

My registered, pedigree ewes cost me 80 each last year. Probably a very fair price especially as the price of sheep seems to be going up at the moment. Even older stock and cade lambs are apparently fetching good prices.
Apparently you can get some bargins on places like preloved from people trying to find homes for pets that have outgrown their gardens etc. Not looked myself though.
Title: Re: How much to pay for sheep? Whats a good price?
Post by: Sparkyrog on March 06, 2013, 20:16
There is a way to get into sheep breeding cheaply but it is a little brutal although better for the sheep in the long run ! and do you like mutton ?
Title: Re: How much to pay for sheep? Whats a good price?
Post by: Sparkyrog on March 06, 2013, 20:20
also your ground wants to be on the the dryer side as footrot can be a major problem ,not hard to deal with but not pleasant either .
Title: Re: How much to pay for sheep? Whats a good price?
Post by: grinling on March 07, 2013, 09:12
Someone on preloved in Lincolnshire (Grantham) are selling his sheep (ewes and ram) for 180
Title: Re: How much to pay for sheep? Whats a good price?
Post by: nuzuki on March 08, 2013, 10:41
Thanks for the replies. I was offered last year some sheep (or possibly lambs) at the cost of 35 each which after seeing your replies seems an absolute bargain. I shall contact them in the next couple of weeks and see if they can quote that again. Its a farm under 5 miles from me. Also is there any make shift ways of transporting them? Or is it best to borrow a proper livestock trailer? A couple of people in the village should allow me to borrow theirs.

If I have a dead sheep on my land do I call a company to come and collect it? I think the farmers I spoke to said its 50 a visit which just wouldnt make financial sense to me. (nacker van?)

sparkyrog - I have a concrete plinth under the field shelter but then the land does get very soggy round here due to clay. I still think given a choice of pigs vs sheep, the sheep would be a better bet for the land I have. How do you mean get into sheep breeding cheaply, do you mean get an old ewe and take the risk of whether she is still fertile? Then build up a stock from there?
Title: Re: How much to pay for sheep? Whats a good price?
Post by: Sparkyrog on March 08, 2013, 10:43
Thanks for the replies. I was offered last year some sheep (or possibly lambs) at the cost of 35 each which after seeing your replies seems an absolute bargain. I shall contact them in the next couple of weeks and see if they can quote that again. Its a farm under 5 miles from me. Also is there any make shift ways of transporting them? Or is it best to borrow a proper livestock trailer? A couple of people in the village should allow me to borrow theirs.

If I have a dead sheep on my land do I call a company to come and collect it? I think the farmers I spoke to said its 50 a visit which just wouldnt make financial sense to me. (nacker van?)

sparkyrog - I have a concrete plinth under the field shelter but then the land does get very soggy round here due to clay. I still think given a choice of pigs vs sheep, the sheep would be a better bet for the land I have. How do you mean get into sheep breeding cheaply, do you mean get an old ewe and take the risk of whether she is still fertile? Then build up a stock from there?
yes basicly sheep are aged by their teeth, old broken mouthed ewes are normally still fertile and make good mothers they just don't do as well but the lambs do .they don't have as many often either. but if you can buy lambs for 35 grabem  :)
Title: Re: How much to pay for sheep? Whats a good price?
Post by: arugula on March 08, 2013, 12:34
If I have a dead sheep on my land do I call a company to come and collect it? I think the farmers I spoke to said its 50 a visit which just wouldnt make financial sense to me. (nacker van?)

I don't think its anything like that amount for sheep, but I haven't got the figures to hand. I'll check if no-one else has got back to you on that.
Title: Re: How much to pay for sheep? Whats a good price?
Post by: 8doubles on March 08, 2013, 13:22
Would orphan lambs be an option?

If you had the time to hand rear i think you could get the lambs for little initial cost.
Title: Re: How much to pay for sheep? Whats a good price?
Post by: nuzuki on March 08, 2013, 14:49
In fact I have just been reading about orphan lambs, I think this is the prefferred method for me.

http://www.rivercottage.net/forum/ask/other-livestock/22510how-often-and-how-much-to-feed-orphan-lambs/

I hear in some cases they can be had for free :) I only have just under an acre field to put them in so would 4 sheep be too many or too little? I understand i'd have to spend less on feed if I can give them grass to eat but I dont think my acre would last long with them chomping at it all day long. I have a fenced off section with a shelter so I can put them in there and substitute the grass for feed whilst the grass replenishes possibly?

I have a wedding to goto tomorrow but shall try kicking this off on sunday or next weekend. I'll let you know how it all turns out :)
Title: Re: How much to pay for sheep? Whats a good price?
Post by: John on March 09, 2013, 09:23
Have you considered buying a reference book? This is highly regarded: Starting with Sheep by Mary Castell - it's available from Broad Leys here: Starting with Sheep (http://www.blpbooks.co.uk/broad_leys_books/starting_with_sheep.php)
Title: Re: How much to pay for sheep? Whats a good price?
Post by: Kate and her Ducks on March 17, 2013, 19:59
I don't think its anything like that amount for sheep, but I haven't got the figures to hand. I'll check if no-one else has got back to you on that.

I paid 16 for a company that specialises in fallen stock. There is a not for profit organisation for fallen stock. Farmers with lrge numbers join for a months or yearly fee and can then call them out whenever to collect fallen stock. For those of us with just a couple of animals it is easier to pay as and when but they are still a good point of call as they can put you in touch with a company or two near to you which is what I did.
Title: Re: How much to pay for sheep? Whats a good price?
Post by: Kate and her Ducks on March 17, 2013, 20:00
http://www.nfsco.co.uk/

This is them. They were very helpful when I sadly needed them.
Title: Re: How much to pay for sheep? Whats a good price?
Post by: Sassy on March 18, 2013, 08:54
Orphan lambs would be a good way to start. You also then have better 'trained' animals which will make handling easier. Many farmers are happy to have them taken off their hands, however, it is good to pay a tenner for them. Also take them on the understanding they will help you if you have a problem. This is the best idea as you will need to buy  equipment such as ear taggers otherwise - before you have decided this is definitely the road to go down.

I don't think a ram with 3/4 sheep is going to be workable - not enough to keep him busy and you do not have enough land to keep him separate at other times.

Some farm vets and agricultural colleges do training days which are very good.

I took orphan lambs the first time to ensure I could send them for meat when the time was right! I did it but only because I did not get too close to them and spent the whole time determined they were going.  Even then I nearly kept one!! ::) ::) :)
Title: Re: How much to pay for sheep? Whats a good price?
Post by: nuzuki on April 16, 2013, 11:24
Thanks for the replies, I have a meeting with the sheep lady this weekend and she is goign to run through the options with me. Lamb and ram or lambs at foot seems to be what i'll go with. The lambs were 35 and the ewes were 100 each. I'll keep you updated as to how it goes
Title: Re: How much to pay for sheep? Whats a good price?
Post by: matty0282 on July 04, 2017, 22:05
hello were from lincolnshire and getting some land soon,could anyone please give me details of were we can
buy some sheep piglet and chickens and ducks please,it will be in 2-3 weeks
thank you
Title: Re: How much to pay for sheep? Whats a good price?
Post by: Kate and her Ducks on August 27, 2017, 16:44
Almost impossible to answer even if I knew Lincolnshire! Depends entirely on what you want.

Chickens - Ex Batt, hybrid, pure breed? Layers or meat? What do you want them for?
Pretty much all the same applies to the other animals you mentioned. Decide what you want and then you can start looking around for them.

Good luck on your adventure but I would advise not started with all of them at once if you are new to them. Each species has its own needs and demands on your time and it is really easy to take on too much, trust me, I know!
Title: Re: How much to pay for sheep? Whats a good price?
Post by: John on October 15, 2017, 15:11
We've a good list of poultry breeders on the site
http://www.chickens.allotment-garden.org/poultry-suppliers/poultry-for-sale-Lincolnshire.php
Often these are farmers who stock other animals or know where to get them from
As Kate says - don't try to do everything at once unless you really know what you're doing. Even then, get one animal housed / fenced properly before taking on another.