You’ve practiced with your lamb, your clothes are ready, your lamb looks great and all is wonderful until the judge asks you a question and all you can say is uhh…what?

Be prepared for these questions…

♣ Is your lamb an ewe or a wether?

This should be a no-brainer. Ewes are female and a wether is a castrated male.  Do NOT respond with “it’s a girl lamb or a boy lamb” use the proper terminology, it makes you sound knowledgeable.

♣ How much does your lamb weigh?

Another, no brainer.  Your lamb was weighed in for the show, remember that weight!

♣ When was your lamb born? or How old is your lamb?

This can be trickier.  If you know it awesome or if you can find out you should do that.  You should Have asked when you purchased your lamb but if you didn’t… Before the show, determine your lambs stats and how you are going to respond to these questions.

  • Option #1 – Set an arbitrary date close to when you lamb was born.  “My lamb was born January 2, 2015 or my lamb is 5 months old”
  • Option #2 – You can say something a little more vague. ie “my lamb was born in early January or she’s about 4 1/2 months old”

♣ What is your lamb’s name?

Most of you have named your lamb but for those who haven’t, pick a name!  You don’t have to get creative, just don’t say “he doesn’t have one.”  Ideas: you can call your lamb by the tag #, sex or breed.  ie. “1062”

♣ What breeder did you purchase your lamb from?

If you don’t know, find out.

♣ What breed is your lamb?

Know the breed and say it confidently.

♣ What kind of feed do you use?

You’d be surprised by the number of exhibitors that don’t know!  The best answer would answer what feed and why in one sentence.  ie “We use Purina honor chow, it is high in protein and finishes our lambs nicely.”

♣ How much do you feed your lamb? or What is your feeding schedule?

This is a question that many don’t know!  Why?  Most exhibitor’s parents purchase the feed and tell them how much to feed.  Your answer should not be “a scoop in the morning and a scoop in the evening.”  A good answer is “I feed him a 1/4 flake of alfalfa & 3/4 of a lb. of show chow in the morning and in the afternoon.”

♣ What type of exercise program is your lamb on? or How much time do you work with your lamb each day?

Most of you have a schedule for your lamb.  For those that are not exercising and working with their lamb regularly and on a schedule, research and set up your program.

♣ What would you change about your lamb? or What is your lambs best feature?

You need to honestly evaluate your lamb.  If you don’t have the experience to do this ask your parents, 4-H club leader or FFA advisor to evaluate your lamb.  When they evaluate ask them why they like this or would change that.

♣ Where is the (name of a body part) on the lamb?

There are lots of diagrams to help you learn the parts, but I think the best way is hands on.  Have someone quiz you while you’re working with your lamb and show them the proper part.

♣ What is the average amount of back fat on a lamb?

.225

♣ How is the yield grade determined?

Back fat x 10 +4

♣ What is the most important nutrient sheep need?

Water.

♣ What are the top 3 lambs in this class and why?

Evaluate and make your selection.  Be prepared to give your reasons and remember to use correct terminology.

♣ How many parts are there to a lamb’s stomach and name them?

There are 4 parts: the rumen, reticulum, abomasums, omasum.

♣ Name some meat breeds?

Suffolk, Dorset, Southdown, Hampshire

♣ Name some wool breeds?

Merino, Lincoln, Cotswold, Romney

♣ Name some dual purpose breeds?

Dorset, Cheviot, Polypay, Romney, Columbia

♣ What are the 4 main cuts of a lamb?

Loin, leg of lamb, rack, & brisket

♣ Do lambs have teeth on their upper jaw?

Yes, in the back,

♣ Why did you choose this lamb?

Do NOT say “he was the cutest one.”  Give a reason that related to your lambs show quality.  “I chose him because of his expressive hind end and straight back.”

♣ What is the ideal weight of a market lamb?

130-145 lbs.

♣ What is the most expensive cut on a lamb?

The rack is the most expensive cut.

♣ How many teeth do sheep have?

32.

♣ What is the purpose of a scrapie tag?

It’s so that if there is a sickness it can be traced back to the point of origin.

♣ What is the gestation period for an ewe?

5 months.

What is the oddest question a judge has asked you?

For more information check out The Judging Connection.

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