Oestrogenic clovers can significantly impact lambing percentages and these two fact sheets will help you to identify the ‘bad’ clovers and give you tips on how to manage your sheep while grazing oestrogenic pastures

The clovers which are highly oestrogenic are Dinninup, Dwalganup, Yarloop and Geraldton. If these clovers make up 20 percent of the pasture eaten by ewes, fertility problems could occur. For a fact sheet containing photos and descriptions click here

For information on managing pastures containing oestrogenic clovers and improving ewe fertility click here

Handouts from the Oestrogenic Clover and EID for Sheep field day held at Richard Kirkland’s property in October can be found below.

The handouts include the field assessment sheets for identifying oestrogenic clovers, and a guide for risk scoring paddocks

The field day held at Conmurra had three informative speakers:

Ian McFarland – Livestock Consultant, PIRSA Rural Solutions, Improving reproductive efficiency

Key points;

Impact of lamb survival rates on lambs marked. The common rate is 80% for singles, 50% for twins. Target should be 90% single and 70% twins.
What impacts lamb survival? Most is birth injury and long and difficult births followed by poor ewe nutrition
Lamb birthweight is the single biggest determinant of lamb survival in the first 72 hours.
Improving reproductive efficiency. Important factors to consider;
•Time of lambing –impact on conception rates
•Ewe Management –condition score, mob size
•Ram Management –5 T’s (8 -12 weeks before joining check rams teeth, toes, tackle, torso and testes)
•Lamb mortality –lamb birthweight, ewe nutrition
Click here for the Presentation 

David Woodard – Rural Solutions SA, Oestrogenic clovers effect on ewe fertility.

Key points;

Oestrogenic Clover Disorder. 4 main cultivars of concern – Yarloop, Dinninup, Dwalganup & Geraldton. Would you be able to recognise them?
Clover Disease Symptoms include – Lowered ewe fertility, Higher % dry ewes, Difficult births & post natal
mortality in lambs, Prolapse of the uterus – higher % than normal, Udder development in maiden ewes and wethers
Managing Clover Disease
Click here for the Presentation for more information and great photos to help you identify the “bad” clovers

Michelle Cousins – Cousins Merino Service, Data Management and Decision Support Programs for EID Technologies

Key points;

What is Electronic Identification? Why do we want to use it?
Precision Sheep Management gives the producer the ability to make decisions based on an individual animals performance and tailor management systems accordingly
What equipment is out there?
Data management and Apps
5 common eID mistakes you can avoid
For more information on all the key points click here for the Presentation

Below are the contact details for the lab if you are interested in sending in samples to test for oestrogenic levels in plants, plus the details on how to collect the samples.

Post samples to: Southern Scientific Services, PO box 234, Hamilton Vic. 3300

The cost depends on the number of samples but it is about $90 for 2-5 samples.

As far as collection goes, representative sampling is required, often a cross-paddock walk taking a whole plant at ground or grazing level (your choice). Sample only the clover content of the pasture and remove any grass and weeds. Roughly chop the collected sample & subsample out at least 2 large handfuls overall & place in labelled paper bag. Freeze if accumulating samples or its late in the week. Post in paper bags so samples dry rather than sweat in plastic and use a cardboard box to post the samples.