Supplementary Feeding Sheep in the Summer

  • Supplementary Feeding Sheep in the Summer

    Posted by Kate Tarrant on 23/11/2023 at 1:44 pm

    Hello other sheep farmers. I am keen to hear what others are supplementary feeding with, when to start, how often to feed, and how they are feeding the supplements out. (Image attention grabber only)

    Lower Blackwood LCDC replied 3 months, 4 weeks ago 4 Members · 8 Replies
  • 8 Replies
  • Darren Arthur

    23/11/2023 at 2:51 pm

    Hi Kate, I’m starting to give them spent grain from the brewery maybe once a week. It’s basically just a filler as most of the goodness is gone. They don’t really need it as we have heaps of green grass still. I’ll start feeding hay end of January hopefully. It’s the regen mix I baled as a trial.


    • Kate Tarrant

      24/11/2023 at 8:32 am

      Great use of a waste product Darren!

  • Kate Tarrant

    24/11/2023 at 8:38 am

    I’m thinking of starting to feed lupins soon as like a lot of others our pasture has dried off much earlier than last year. What do people recommend as a maintenance volume / head / week .. not trying to fatten lambs. @gemma_justin @ben-mcdonald @kylie-silverthorne

    • Gemma and Justin

      27/11/2023 at 5:27 pm

      Hi Kate, i think at this stage, even though your grass has dried off, they would be getting close to enough, You could feed 50grams a day per ewe, feed a couple times a week ie 350grams each time, this will make better use of your dry feed

      If you can fat score your sheep now and then check them again in a mth, you can see how there travelling

      Cheers Justin

      • Kate Tarrant

        27/11/2023 at 6:06 pm

        Thanks Justin, great advice and will do!😀

        • Gemma and Justin

          28/11/2023 at 9:11 am

          Hi kate.

          Just double check Justin’s maths! It’s 350g for the week total so if feeding twice its 175g per feed. Or every 2nd 100g etc.

          Gemma x

  • Lower Blackwood LCDC

    16/02/2024 at 8:55 am

    We put this in our latest eNews but thought it also worth posting here:

    Feeding & Managing Sheep in Dry Times

    Summer and autumn are critical for sheep because both the amount and quality of dry feed deteriorates over time. Pasture quantity can naturally decline over summer and autumn by up to 50 per cent. Digestibility is an indicator of how much energy the feed contains. A digestibility value of 75 per cent in early October can drop to 55 per cent by early January. Below 55 per cent digestibility sheep are usually unable to consume enough pasture to maintain their weight.

    The aim of supplementary feeding is to hand feed as little as possible to achieve the required production from the sheep. To achieve this, the sheep need to utilise as much dry feed as possible – i.e. what you hand feed needs to compliment the existing dry feed and not substitute for it. The level of supplementary feeding needed will depend on the class of sheep, their current condition and what is available in the paddock.

    Find out more in this great little bulletin ‘Feeding & Managing Sheep in Dry Times‘ produced in 2006 by the then Department of Agriculture for WA & SA – still relevant 13 years on. For the latest go also to the DPIRD website:

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