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Herd Update 24.09.17

General Detail

  • Ground conditions had improved on Monday/Tuesday but this was all undone by heavy rain on Wednesday/Thursday – this is a major problem for farmers in the west of Ireland and utilisation is poor as result.
  • 5 inches rainfall in June & July, 4 inches in Aug & Sept – 18 inches in total over Summer.  
  • 63 weaned weanlings were returned to grass in two groups on Monday the 25th   to the Newford home farm.
  • The aim for these weanlings is to keep them at grass to the end of October / early November providing the weather and grass availability allows.
  • As the weanlings start grazing each paddock, we will begin closing off to prepare for early grass in spring 2018.  Grazing will keep them healthy and reduce the risk of pneumonia. Normally closing would begin mid-October so unless we get a very long dry spell of warm dry weather the paddocks currently being grazed will be closed.
  • The weaned cows are on slats and will remain indoors for the foreseeable future as grass growth is slow and grazing conditions for cows is not good.
  • Our plan is to keep the grass for the finishing heifers and steers getting concentrate at grass – these will be slaughtered off grass. All fattening shed cattle are in already.
  • The cows are receiving first cut silage, the slats are scraped and dusted with lime each morning to prevent mastitis - so far there has been very little infection
  • The third bunch of cows (23) will be weaned on Friday the 29th. These cows will be weighed and condition scored on Friday, calves will also be weighed.
  • Newford silage results have come back from Hillsborough and the summary is as follows
  • Based on the results above dry cows will be fed pit silage and weanlings/finishing stock will get bales.
  • The two Newford breeding stock bulls have been sold off the farm. Newford will be using 100% AI next year.
  • One cow died last week due to a suspected case of grass tetany even though mineral buckets were with cows and unfortunately the calf with coccidiosis died the previous week.

Weaning Management at Newford

Grassland Details

  • Target pre grazing paddocks at 1400/1450 Kg DM (kg DM/Ha)
  • To view our grass measurement report log onto www.pasturebase.teagasc.ie and click Newford Farm on the drop down menu

Please Note

Newford Farm welcomes all farmers and KT Discussion groups to the farm

Key recommendations for this week

  1. Check calves for pneumonia and coccidiosis
  2. Keep tetany buckets out with the remaining  cows outside
  3. Watch out for any mastitis in the dry cows
  4. Prepare and identify paddocks for winter closure , with the view to early grass in the spring 2018
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