It seems pointless to be TB testing our animals that are so close to slaughter
At the time of writing we are in the middle of doing our annual TB test. This always puts me in bad humour because I can't help thinking what a pointless exercise it is to be testing animals that are going to be slaughtered within a month, as is happening in our case. And this situation is replicated around the country.
In the five pages of Do's and mostly Don'ts of information that came from the DVO in the notification to do the test, one line jumped out at me: that I must complete my herd test within 14 days of starting it.
This to me would seem to provide the ideal opportunity by which all animals in the herd over two years of age would be tested in week 1 and, subsequently, only if a reactor shows up, to then test the animals under two years of age in week 2.
This is then fully compliant with the current timeline allocation. Can I be alone in thinking this?
On a more positive note, we were pleasantly surprised when we scanned the cows recently. About 94pc of those scanned are in calf, with 57pc of them in calf in the first 30 days.
Following a difficult grazing season and less than satisfactory silage, I feared it might be a difficult year to get cows in calf (just goes to show what I know).
Normally we stick rigidly to a 12-week breeding season but this year we left the bulls in, simply because I felt a late calf would be better than no calf; so I have no doubt that, when we rescan the empties in a few weeks, some of them will show up in calf too.