ND sheep & lamb inventory at record low


All sheep and lamb inventory in North Dakota on January 1, 2012 totaled a record low 73,000 head, down from 78,000 head last year, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service, North Dakota Field Office.

Breeding sheep inventory totaled a record low 57,000 head, down 7 percent from last year’s 61,000 head. Ewes one year and older totaled a record low 46,000 head, down 4,000 head from the previous year. Rams one year and older remained unchanged from last year’s 2,000 head. Total replacement lambs were also unchanged from last year at 9,000 head.

Market sheep and lambs totaled a record low 16,000 head, down 1,000 head from last year.

A total of 1,000 head were mature sheep (1 year and older) while the remaining 15,000 were under 1 year. Market lamb weight groups were estimated as follows: 1,000 lambs were under 65 pounds; 3,000 were 65-84 pounds; 7,000 were 85-105 pounds; 4,000 were over 105 pounds.

The 2011 lamb crop totaled a record low 63,000 head, down from 70,000 in 2010. The 2011lambing rate was 126 per 100 ewes one year and older, compared with 119 per 100 ewes in 2010.

Shorn wool production during 2011 was a record low 540,000 pounds, down 5 percent from 2010. Sheep and lambs shorn totaled 66,000 head, down 4,000 head from 2010. The average price paid for wool sold in 2011 was $1.40 per pound, compared with $0.90 in 2010. The total value of wool was $756,000, up 47 percent from $513,000 in 2010.

All meat and other goat and kid inventory in North Dakota totaled 2,800 head on January 1, 2012, up 100 head from last year. For angora and milk goats, North Dakota data is not published to avoid disclosure of individual operations.

Source: USDA NASS ND Field Office