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Registration shows big dairying swing

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End of year CMMS statistics show a sharp drop in the number of calves born to beef breed bulls  Photo: O'Gorman Photography.

End of year CMMS statistics show a sharp drop in the number of calves born to beef breed bulls Photo: O'Gorman Photography.

End of year CMMS statistics show a sharp drop in the number of calves born to beef breed bulls Photo: O'Gorman Photography.

Calf registrations for 2013 confirm the huge swing to dairying that is on the cards for the country's cattle sector.

End of year CMMS statistics show a sharp drop in the number of calves born to beef breed bulls during the past year, with the opposite the case with dairy calf registrations.

Beef calves dropped by 128,155 head in 2013, while the number of calves sired by dairy bulls increased by 32,273.

The decline in both beef calf and total calf numbers could compromise the sector's ability to meet the Food Harvest 2020 projections.

While end of year figures have still to be finalised, 2013 calf numbers at farm level look set to be 150,000 lower by the end of 2013.

This is driven by the twin forces of 95,582 fewer calves registered and 52,381 more calves live exported out of the country last year.

The ratio of male to female in each category was broadly similar to 2012.

Calves born to a beef bull were 51.4pc male, with calves born to a dairy bull steady at 49pc male.

Indo Farming