How sheep farmers can have enough grass supply in time for the 'Magic Day'
Walking the farm and keeping it simple are sheep farmer Dan O'Loughlin’s main grassland management tips for reaching the 'magic day' (when grass growth equals demand) on his farm near Monasterevin, Co Kildare.
The sheep farmer’s lambing season is due to start on March 6 and his mix of Belclare and Suffolk ewes are expecting over 200 lambs.
Dan’s average opening farm cover is 626 kg/ha on 32ha of land reserved for sheep.
Dan’s targeted magic day is April 10 where he will need to feed 208 ewes at a grass demand of 2.8 kg/hd/day= 582 kg dm/day and 68 ewe lambs with grass demand of 1.2 kg/hd/day= 82 kg dm/day.
Last week, Teagasc Grass10 advisors held a spring grazing management walk on his farm to advice sheep farmers how best they can utilise grass in time for their own "magic days" and for throughout the spring season.
Sub division of paddocks
Grass10 advisor John Douglas urged farmers to sub-divide their paddocks to increase grass utilisation and increase daily live-weight gain.
“Sub dividing paddocks by having electric fences that in place means that you can graze that field out again before the re growths start coming back, so Dan is able to get in on a smaller area and get out again and let the grass grow back again by having these paddocks,” he said