Cost To Keep a Sheep for One Year
In City Limits




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Cost To Keep a Sheep*
for One Year In City Limits

Hay ($170/Ton, 5 Months) $97.17
Hay ($170/Ton, 7 Months), Supplement Pasture $97.17
Grain, Whole Yellow Corn ($0.128/lb) $56.97
Lamb Feed $0.00
Bedding $6.24
Manure Disposal ($10/hr) $100.00
Building Maintenance $6.00
Electrical, Water Heaters $21.43
Electrical, Well Water $34.29
Irrigation Tax $3.43
CD-T: Adult Booster $1.04
CD-T: Lamb Vaccination $4.00
Salt + Minerals $2.25
Pasture Maintenance $8.00
Pressurized Irrigation $8.00
Worming (Adult Sheep) $4.16
Worming (2 Lambs) $5.50
Other Vet Costs $0.00
Shearing $5.00
Security (Dog Protection) $10.00
Ram Replacement $7.00
Marketing and Hauling $8.00
Supplies $6.00
Interest on Operating Money $14.00
City/County Property Taxes (1 acre*) $114.30
Rural Property Taxes = $0.093 (1 acre*)
Owner Labor Cost ($10/hr X 35 Hrs) $350.00
Total Operating Cost Per Ewe $969.95
Divide by 2 Lambs per Ewe /2
Minimum Price Per Lamb $484.98
Average Live Market Lamb Price $125.00
Profit/Loss Per Lamb ($359.98)
Average Usable Lamb Meat per Lamb 33 Lbs
Price Per Lb to Break Even $14.70
Butchering and Wrapping per Lb $3.43
Price Per Lb with a 30% Profit Margin $23.57
*Based on seven ewes per acre.

Most of the items are costs which result from or are strongly linked to hay-feeding. There is no profit from the wool. The wool has to be tossed in the trash because wool has such a low market value. As a city farmer, there is no way to produce a profit unless the city would lower property taxes. City and/or County Property taxes are some of the largest costs in producing lambs.

Grass is the cheapest method for raising lambs. However, we can not compete against local rural lambs or imported lambs which roam on large open pastures that do not have high property taxes (rural property taxes are usually less than $1.00 per acre). These lambs also do not require barns, lambing pens or manure-handling.

The only advantages small city growers have are local market sales (direct sales) and control over lamb flavor.

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A respected authority on sheep raising for over three decades, author Paula Simmons has written many books and magazines articles on spinning wool. Paula is also a lecturer and conducts workshops in the United States and Canada on raising sheep and spinning wool for a living. Together with her husband, Ross, Paula has been raising and sheering sheep, and spinning and weaving wool for over 20 years on their farm in Washington.
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Care and Feeding of Your Lamb, TVSP
Click on the links below to learn more
Acidosis Bloat Bluetongue Care
Copper Toxicity Cough Dewormers Diarrhea
Feed Feed Hay First Feed Rations Foot Rot
Limping Parts of a Sheep Pneumonia Polioencephalomalacia
Polyarthritis Rectal Prolapse Sheep Gestation Table Sheep Selection Checklist
Sick Lamb Snotty Nose Sore Mouth Tails - Dock
Urolithiasis  CORYNEBACTERIUM PSEUDOTUBERCULOSIS  Retail Cuts of Lamb Market Lamb
Yield Grade Table
Parasite Management - Wormer List  Sheep Milker  Cost To Keep a Sheep HOME
...more Information in PDF Format, TVSP
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External Parasites Internal Parasites
Lambing Problems Nutritional Diseases Ram Epididymitis Reproductive Diseases
Improving Reproductive
Performance of the Ewe
Tube a Lamb Udder Diseases
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Grades of
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Difficult Lambing Feeding Ewes      

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Treasure Valley Sheep Producers
7808 Swift Ln.
Boise, ID 83704-5835


Treasure Valley Sheep Producers, an Idaho Sheep Producer Organization, promotes the sheep industry, encourages and mentors youth, and promotes fellowship and comradery among the industry.

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