Industry News & Events

2nd Annual Global Sheep Conference

In preparing for the 2nd Annual Global Sheep Conference, the Canadian Sheep Federation (CSF) are working on a Canadian presentation that speaks to what the industry thinks the sector’s good new story is.

Their hope is to collate short videos from all walks of the industry and therefore are putting out a call for submissions.  Additional details can be found here.

2020 Nova Scotia Sheep Producer Survey

The Sheep Producers Association of Nova Scotia (SPANS) is currently drafting an industry development strategy to increase lamb marketing, enhance production efficiency and improve farm management. SPANS has been working with the business development branch of the Nova Scotia Department of Agriculture to develop strategic priorities and an implementation plan. To help get a better understanding of industry demographics and outlook, we ask that you help us by responding to this survey. This SPANS administered survey will take about 20 minutes to complete and all responses will be kept anonymous by aggregating responses. The survey will primarily be administered using Google Docs, however, if you would like to complete the survey via phone, please call Ashley at 902-893-7455. Please have the primary decision maker for the farm complete this survey.

To encourage participation, SPANS is offering a chance to win one of four $25 gas cards, if you provide your name when completing the survey.

The 2020 Nova Scotia Sheep Producer Survey will close December 4, 2020.

PSBANS Annual Meeting Notice

The Purebred Sheep Breeders Association of Nova Scotia is holding its AGM by Zoom at 10:00 a.m. on Nov. 7th, 2020 due to Covid-19.  This is a members only meeting and is by e-mail invitation to current members of the association.

Please contact Cathy Vallis at or (902) 895-4039.

Election of the CSBA director takes place during this meeting.

Consultation on proposed regulatory framework for livestock feeds

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) is launching a 45-day consultation period from September 30, 2020, to November 15, 2020, to seek feedback and to inform upcoming changes to the Feeds Regulations.

If you wish to participate in this consultation, please send your feedback by November 15, 2020.

SPANS Annual Meeting

Maritime Central Ram Performance & Genetic Evaluation Program – Producer Survey

SPANS, in cooperation with the Maritime Beef Test Society, AgSights and provincial sheep associations, have teamed to offer a 2021 Central Ram Evaluation to be hosted in Nappan, Nova Scotia. This Central Ram Test is designed to provide Canadian purebred and commercial sheep producers with the necessary tools to evaluate the genetic potential of their performance-tested ram(s) as breeding stock, while offering important information used to evaluate their own flock’s genetic improvement program. The information generated in a Central Ram Evaluation can improve the marketability of rams and provide valuable information used as a selection tools to increase a sheep flocks productivity and profitability.

Performance and genetic traits to be evaluated during the 70-day spanning test period would include:

Feed Efficiency – Feed intake and feed efficiency can vary over 20% in a flock posing as a significant cost in sheep production systems. Daily feed intake will be recorded to measure how efficiently each ram converts feed to product (e.g. kg gain). Overtime a new feed efficiency EPD will also be developed that breeders and buyers can reference to identify genetically superior feed efficient rams. Improved feed efficiency across a flock can increase farm productivity and profitability (up to 33%) by improving lamb output while lower feed costs. Feed efficiency will be calculated using a method (Residual Feed Intake (RFI)) that assures that performance (daily weight gain and carcass merit) is not impacted, ensuring that breeders can select for rams that are both productive and efficient.

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Sheep Industry Enhancement Program

The Nova Scotia Department of Agriculture have released their newest CAP sheep industry program: The Sheep Industry Enhancement Program

This program seeks to improve industry competitiveness and resilience through:

– disease prevention and control;
– enhancing animal health and welfare; and
– improving genetic potential

The application deadline is November 30, 2020.

Transportation Regulation Manifests and Training

The SPANS have resources available for producers regarding the transportation regulation amendments earlier this year. CFIA resources can be found within the Animal Health section of our website, as well as a fillable livestock manifest.

Beginning September 1, 2020, manifest books will be available at our office for a fee of $10.00 each, for 50 triplicate copies. If you would like customized books made, please contact ASE Print at 902-895-8804. There will be a fee of $25.00 for customization.

Canadian Livestock Transport (CLT) offer an online course for commercial trucker three-year certification at $200.00 for one species, with fees increasing up to all four species. Commercial truckers in Nova Scotia who are interested in participating in this training can contact our office for potential funding opportunities.

We are in the process of planning producer livestock training and will release additional details in the coming weeks.

Emergency Forage Planning for When Hay is Tight

Realizing that unfortunately for many, hay supplies will likely be tight in the coming winter months, Real Agriculture have compiled a list of options either through management, planting, or feeding, to help keep animals cared for in the months ahead.

Their full list of suggestions, such as culling mercilessly, fertilizing what you have, grazing crop residue and testing your feed can be found on their website.

Maritime AgCast

Maritime producers will soon be able to catch local, regional and national guests discussing topics within the industry when the Agri-Commodity Management Association (ACMA) launches Maritime AgCast September 8, 2020!

Brad McCallum will be chatting with various guests regarding important livestock topics, as well as keeping you updated on current markets and upcoming industry events.

This podcast will air episodes bi-weekly, ranging in topic from disease management, forage and pasture management, vehicle compliance and many others!

Ensure you subscribe in advance to your favourite podcast platform such as Spotify, iTunes, Google and Anchor.

Contact SPANS

7 Atlantic Central Drive
East Mountain, NS B6L 2Z2
Phone: 902-893-7455
Fax: 902-893-7063

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