The silage is in but the grazing fields are bare
Published 03/06/2015 | 02:30
Last week was a successful one; I got my silage in and covered after allowing it to wilt for 36 hours. My biggest worry in situations such as this is that it might dry out too much which can cause the top and the sides of the pit to become musty. Musty silage has probably cost me several losses over the years.
My silage fields were light enough except for two sections that got slurry last October. They could probably have benefited from waiting for another week or so but I decided not to delay cutting as there is no guaranteeing the weather and cutting early also ensures better feeding quality and of course earlier after-grass.
I find the introduction of after-grass into my rotational grazing system from late June on to be a very important part of my finishing system, particularly in a dry summer.
While a good supply of rain is very important for growth on my farm, the cold weather has certainly held back growth until now and my grazing fields are quite bare at this stage.
This has slowed down thrive, but I am encouraged by the progress made by the last lot of cattle out of the shed. These are the youngest and they appear to be thriving better than in previous years.
I have always been concerned that these younger cattle, as they never appear to do as well as the older cattle.
While I thought that copper deficiency was a problem, I'm not totally convinced.
This year, as well as injecting them with copper, I have put out some extra mineral licks and reduced their stocking rate slightly to see what effect this will have.