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Abstract

The long, cold winters and the summer rainfall of the New England region mean that, in the absence of conservation of surplus summer grass, wool-cutting properties tend to be overstocked in the winter and understocked in the summer. The closing up of relatively frost-resistant improved pasture in the autumn for later grazing in the winter does help, however, to level out that pasture production which is consumable on the hoof. Even so, the existence of improved pastures capable of rearing milk-fed, fat lambs has inclined many graziers towards running their properties, all or in part, under fat lamb rearing systems. As they see it, this simplifies management problems relating to stock numbers. The size of the ewe flock is solely determined by the number of ewes which it is considered a place can carry through the winter. If, as is usual, cross-bred ewes are used and the replacements are bought-in there is scope for easy adjustment of flock numbers to accord with the current seasonal conditions. The lambs reared by these ewes are drafted off the place before the onset of winter, having been fattened on the luxuriant growth of summer grass. Thus, the humps in pasture production and in animal numbers

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