Breeding problems ahead for 'thin' cows
Fodder crisis may have another costly knock-on effect as vets warn of fertility troubles
Concerns are being raised over the fast-approaching breeding season as farmers continue to deal with the fallout from the weather woes.
Farmers will be counting the costs of mounting feed and forage bills for months to come as they finally get a reprieve with a marked pick-up in grass growth over the past week.
However, vets and AI technicians looking towards the breeding season for cow herds have warned there may be a costly knock-on impact.
Glanbia Ireland's Jim Bergin said he had concerns as lower proteins in recent weeks were indicators of condition.
"In actual fact, it is next year that that will come through; it is not just a one year thing," said Mr Bergin.
"We would have concern with the calving date next year," he added. "It is very hard to say that you'll have compact calving next year."
Tipperary-based vet Eamon O'Connell said that in some cases cows were "thin", and that a good body condition score was vital ahead of breeding.
"We are expecting a lot of repeats from the first service. It will affect compact calving; there will be more empty cows and later calving," he said.