Farm Ireland
Independent.ie

Friday 18 January 2019

FarmIreland Instagram Takeover; see inside this pedigree beef farm

Catherine Hurley

Catherine Hurley

Beef farmer, Michael Danagher will be taking over the FarmIreland Instagram account today and will giving our readers an insight into his pedigree Charolais farm.

The Laois native farms the pedigree herd, Derries Pedigree Farm, along with the 60 suckler cows and while also buying in store cattle to fatten and dairy beef calves to sell on as weanlings on his 160ac farm.

Prior to coming home to farm full time two years ago, the 26-year-old was a qualified welder and ran a successful business since graduating. However, in the end he said he had to choose which occupation to keep on as coming home after a full day’s work wasn’t feasible long term.

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“In the end I had to choose one or the other. I couldn’t keep going the way I was, it was taking up too much time, so I chose farming. It was always the plan, perhaps a bit sooner than I expected,” he said.

Traditionally, the Derries farm is home to a larger type suckler cow. Michael prefers to breed the Charolais calves off Friesian and Angus cross cows, as he says they have the benefit of being a ‘milkier’ cow as well as fewer calving problems.

He explained that the majority of the surrounding farms are dairying and he buys the calves off them and uses them as replacements. He will see 60 cows calve down this spring and 10 heifers, if he chooses to hold onto them, he said.

The Charolais Pedigree herd also produces breeding bulls and replacement heifers, which he sells on farm to buyers he’s traded with down through the years.

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