Mortality in early born, housed lambs in south-west England

L. E. Green*, K. L. Morgan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Citations (Scopus)


During a 2 year study of diseases in lambs in three early lambing (housed) flocks a total of 428 of 4413 (9.7%) lambs died. All these lambs were examined at post mortem by one investigator who used a routine procedure. Results were stored on a database (dBase III Plus) and analysed using Epiinfo. The peak rate of death occured in lambs less than 1 week old. Over 50% of deaths took place in this period. A small proportion of lambs (approximately 10 out of 1000) died during the prenatal period. Fatalities included chlamydial and mycotic abortions, but in the majority of cases there was no specific abortive agent, lambs were either freshly dead or mummified. Partum deaths (23.3-45.1 per 1000) were categorised into those due to the lambing process, lambs born dead and congenital defects. The most frequent abnormality observed was subcapsular liver rupture (9.3-20.9 per 1000) with up to 60% of affected lambs also having signs of malpresentation (subcutaneous oedema of the neck). Early postpartum deaths (12.9-31.5 per 1000) were primarily associated with starvation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)251-261
Number of pages11
JournalPreventive Veterinary Medicine
Issue number3-4
Publication statusPublished - Nov 1993

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Animals
  • Animal Science and Zoology


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