Sheep

The key products of the Western Australian sheep industry are wool, sheepmeat (lamb and mutton) and live sheep. At around 14.2 million sheep, the WA flock turns off approximately 5.7 million sheep and lambs for meat and live export as well as 72 million kilograms of greasy wool (primarily for export markets) annually.

The Merino is the most common breed of sheep in WA, making up 80% of the state's flock. The remainder are ‘British breeds’ or so-called maternal breeds, meat specific breeds such as Dorpers and some breeds for specialty meat and fibre markets.

The Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development's current focus is on increasing lamb supply, improving the productivity, welfare and sustainability of sheep production and developing and extending targeted information products and services to generate practice change. In an effort to increase the marking rate of lambs, the department, in collaboration with industry, has developed the More Sheep initiative.

Articles

  • All ruminants (including sheep, cattle and goats) require cobalt in their diet for the synthesis of vitamin B12.

  • There are multiple possible causes of both infertility and abortion in ewes, but making a definitive diagnosis is often difficult. Some diseases which are exotic to Australia can cause abortions.

  • The Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD) continues to work with the WA sheep industry towards improved animal welfare outcomes for exported livestock and respond to cha

  • When the prevalence of sheep lice is high as it is in Western Australia at the present time, there is a greater probability that lice will be present in any flock.

  • The new on-farm technology activity was part of the Sheep Industry Business Innovation project and completed a series of case studies on sheep producers who have successful

  • Monitoring the health and liveweight of weaners is important to ensure their survival and for producers to maximise profit. Weaners are more susceptible than adult sheep to a number of health issue

  • Weaners are the most difficult class of sheep to manage effectively, largely because they usually cannot consume enough energy while grazing dry pastures and crop stubbles.

  • During dry times and drought there are a wide range of alternative feedstuffs that can be used to maintain and grow stock.

  • When sheep need to be supplementary fed, either in a confined space or in a paddock, there are different ways to ensure that they are receiving the correct quantities of feed and wastage is reduced

  • Barber's pole worm (Haemonchus contortus) is a potentially harmful roundworm parasite of sheep which can cause a disease called haemonchosis.

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