How to tag a lamb using Swivel Tags and a Swivel Tag Applicator

Swivel tags an excellent nylon 2-piece first tag for lambs.

See Premier’s video on “How to tag a lamb using Swivel Tags and a Swivel Tag applicator.

  1. Place the Swivel Tag into the applicator, female side of the tag into the side of the applicator with the hole, flat side against the applicator.
  2. Male tag to the solid side of the applicator making sure that both parts of the tag are pushed all the way into the applicator. The numbers on the tags will not appear at this time.Before you try to insert the tag into the ear, gently squeeze the applicator together to ensure that both the male and female tags are in alignment.Place the ear between the jaws of the applicator, positioning the male tag on the back side of the ear. Make sure the tag is correctly placed (as shown below right). While gripping the ear firmly at the proposed position of the tag, place the point of the tag in contact with the ear close to your thumb. This allows you to feel the vein therefore avoiding it.

Tag placement is critical to success!
Tags, especially tags for sheep, must be installed no more than 2 inches from the skull and near the center of the ear.
The opposite extreme (installing too far from the skull) will result in more lost tags as the tissue on the tip of the ear is tender and tears easily.
Be careful to avoid the large vein (shown at right).

Inserting Tags in Cold Weather
Plastic tags (all brands) are much easier to install if they are warm. Why? As the temperature drops below freezing plastic becomes less flexible (more stiff) and forcing the male point of a tag through the female takes many more lbs. of pressure (because the female must expand).
So if you care about your hands it’s a good idea to keep the tags above freezing in very cold weather. It takes very little to do this. One method is to simply store them while tagging in a small bucket, cardboard box or tool box with a lid alongside a sealed pop bottle full of warm water. The warm water will keep both the air and the tags warmer in the container.