ALTHOUGH induction of birth has been quite widely used in cattle and is extensively used in pigs, it remains a relatively uncommon procedure in sheep. A major limitation to the technique in sheep is the poor survival of premature lambs and the frequent lack of precise information concerning the stage of gestation of ewes. Induction of parturition to facilitate batch lambing in groups of synchronised ewes can be very successful. However, the adverse economics of the sheep industry in recent years may have precluded its more widespread use. In instances where the welfare and possibly the survival of a ewe is at risk, as in the case of pregnancy toxaemia, a reliable protocol to induce parturition safely and maximise lamb viability is essential.
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