While some farmers might say the only silage they are concerned about at the moment is the silage the animals are eating or sitting in the yard, we are at the time of the year again when fertiliser for early first-cut silage will need to be spread.
The new and improved Beef Environmental Efficiency Programme (BEEP) has been hailed by farm organisations, with some even suggesting that it represents a change in direction by Minister Creed away from cumbersome complicated interventions towards more simplified practical measures.
Silage has started to be fed on numerous farms since late September due to the deteriorating weather in many parts of the country. Silage stocks may become scarce on farms as the winter progresses so farmers need to aim to avoid silage losses during housing period.
The weather last week was idyllic, but many farmers, especially in the west of the country, are still feeling the effects of a very dull and wet month of August. Parts of Galway recorded their wettest August in decades. Sunshine levels have been below normal despite balmy temperatures. There are a number of animal health issues these weather conditions can lead to over the coming weeks and months.
Feeding suckler cows based on their body condition score is essential to reduce feed costs on suckler cow farms where maintaining cows can take up 70pc of the total feed costs, according to UCD Lecturer and Pedigree Beef farmer Alan Kelly speaking at a Teagasc suckler cow conference held in Mayo.
THE Health and Safety Authority is currently carrying out an intensive farm safety inspection campaign, where some 250 farms nation wide will be inspected with a focus on the safe management of livestock during calving season, when the risk of injury to farmers increases significantly.
With dairy cows ready to start calving any day now, if they haven’t started already, farmers may be weighing up their options on how best to go about heifer rearing this season. Here’s some things to consider when deciding to opt for contract rearing your heifers this year or not.
Recent grass silage tests that have been carried out have shown poor protein levels in the winter fodder in many cases, so much so that the feed may need to be supplemented when feeding certain groups of beef animals, according to a report by Head of Drystock for Teagasc, Pearse Kelly.
In the midst of the busy pre-Christmas period, it is important to remember farm safety despite the added stress that many beef farmers are under. Increased workload, poor prices, reduced daylight and family duties can all distract attention at this time of year.
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