According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture's National Agricultural Statistics Service Sheep and Goat report released today, all sheep and lamb inventory in the United States on July 1, 2010, totaled 6.9 million head, down 2 percent from July 1, 2009. Breeding sheep inventory at 4.16 million head on July 1, 2010, was down 3 percent from July 1, 2009. Market sheep and lambs (including newborn lambs), at 2.74 million head, were down 1 percent from last July.
The breeding herd consists of 3.37 million ewes one year old and older, 175,000 rams one year old and older and 620,000 replacement lambs (including newborn lambs). Market lamb inventory at 2.65 million head was comprised of 1.58 million lambs under 65 pounds, 550,000 lambs 65-84 pounds, 285,000 lambs 85-105 pounds and 235,000 lambs over 105 pounds. Market sheep inventory was 90,000 head.
The 2010 lamb crop in the United States is expected to total 3.60 million head, down 2 percent from the 2009 lamb crop of 3.69 million head. Lambs born during January through June 2010 totaled 3.15 million head or 88 percent of the yearly total. An additional 450,000 head are expected to be born during the period July through December 2010. The 2010 expected lambing rate of 108 lambs per 100 ewes is unchanged from last year.
The report is available at http://usda.mannlib.cornell.edu/usda/current/SheeGoat/SheeGoat-07-23-2010.pdf.