Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Animal Science

First Advisor

Jeffrey E. Held


lamb, marketing, overnight stand, shrink loss


Two experiments were conducted to evaluate the effects of three common lamb pre-marketing management practices on live weight shrink loss. Additionally a producer survey was conducted to assess current marketing practices in the North Central region of the US. In these experiments, Exp. 1 (feeder lambs) and 2 (finished lambs), 60 commercial Polypay lambs (Exp. 1: 37.65 ± 0.30 kg of BW; Exp. 2: 52.56 ± 0.14 kg of BW) were allocated for each experiment to 3 treatment groups (n=20 lambs) in a 3 x 3 Latin square design. Treatments were the pre-marketing practices: original pen (ORG), transition pen (TRANS), and overnight stand pen (ONS). During the study, lambs had ad libitum access to a lamb diet (ORG and TRANS) or hay (ONS) and fresh water. Overnight stand lambs experienced greater overall shrink loss for both feeder (P ≤ 0.05) and finished (P ≤ 0.05) lambs compared to the other treatments, ORG and TRANS. During the management phase in both experiments, dietary intake for ONS was lower (P ≤ 0.05) than both ORG and TRANS treatment lambs. Water intake was lower for ONS (Exp. 1 = 0.70 L, P ≤ 0.05; Exp. 2 = 1.42 L, P = 0.154) while TRANS lambs recorded the numerical greater water intake for both experiments (Exp. 1 = 1.36 L, P ≤ 0.05; Exp. 2 = 2.18 L, P = 0.154). A 16 question sheep producer survey was conducted electronically to gain knowledge of the demographics associated with pre-marketing practices in lambs from a 12-state area in the North Central Region of the US. The survey yielded responses from 165 producers. Only 50% of producers indicated that a public auction was their primary marketing choice with the balance of the producers using other available marketing options such as a buying station, direct to packer, or direct to consumer. Over 80% of producers indicated they had no data or knowledge of the degree of lamb shrink loss through the marketing phase. The survey results show that 45% of producers utilize pre-marketing practices including sorting and change of diet.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Lambs -- Weight.
Lambs -- Marketing.


Includes bibliographical references (pages 64-68)



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University


Copyright © 2017 Ann Kolthoff