Copper Trial

Copper Trial
Do pregnant ewes need Copper Supplementation? Is oral or injectable Copper better? Does giving Copper to pregnant ewes increase survivability or weight of the lambs?

While Copper deficiency in New Zealand sheep has been demonstrated to cause disease, there have been little to no published studies evaluating the production effects of subclinical Copper deficiency in ewes and lambs.

While supplementation of Copper to both cattle and sheep is widespread, we don’t know if Copper supplementing sub-clinically deficient ewes would give a production response. Our trial’s objective was to evaluate the effects of either oral or injectable Copper supplementation of pregnant ewes in terms of liver Copper concentration, lambing and weaning percentages, and ewe and lamb weights.

Individually identified pregnant, mature age, Romney stud ewes, from one farm in the Te Akau area were enrolled. Following scanning on the 5th of June 2017, which was about 60 days prior to start of lambing, pregnant ewes were assigned to 3 treatment groups and these three groups were either treated with injectable Copper, oral Copper or no Copper at all.

Join us at one of the Farmer meetings on the 27th or 28th of March (Te Uku hall or Glen Murray hall) to discuss our findings or call Lucy at the Anexa Raglan clinic if you can’t make it.

Date Added: Tuesday, 5th March 2019