Our experience has shown us that even though Dorpers are non seasonal breeders, in this part of the world their fertility is diminished in September, October, November and our lambing percentages have been poor when joining at this time. A December joining is better to give lambs in May, but it is really working against nature.
A ewe will need 50% more feed in the last six weeks of pregnancy and this requirement doubles when she is lactating. The lamb is also grazing and this is being done when the paddock is at its lowest productivity due to the cold conditions. Thus you will carry less sheep, less twins and the ewe has to cope with the extra feed needed to keep herself warm, her lambs warm, to lactate and if a maiden ewe, to continue to grow. We also have a few lambs on the ground now, it will be interesting to compare these lambs with our main lambing in spring at weaning time.