Tuesday, 17 September 2019


16-9-19 data table

17-9-19 wedgeWeek ending 16/9/19 farm notes:

  • We now have all 405 cows calved with 13 days until mating starts!
  • 113 replacement heifers are all now on OAD feeding, dehorned and the first mob of 41 calves weighing 60kg+ are enjoying their time outside. Calves are due for their second recorded weighing and their booster lepto and 5n1 injections on Friday.
  • Pasture growth rates have for 2 weeks been above demand at 65 kg DM/ha/day this week increasing cover to 2212 kg DM/ha.
  • Area allocation at approximately 158m2/cow/day on a 23 day rotation is ensuring the cows are being well feed allocating 19.5kgDM/c/day (which is approx. 4% of their liveweight). Pre-grazing covers ahead this week are around 2800-2900 kgDM/ha which indicates that target residuals will not be meet unless we start to manage surplus feed. Take a look at the feedwedge!
  • Focus is shifting to cropping, pasture improvement and silage making. We have followed the cows this last week through 30ha which received plantain broadcast via the Mag spreader at 4kg seed/ha mixed with sand as a carrier. This is targeted for paddocks that have recently come out of crop or else are not due for cropping within 2 years.
  • Spraying out the first 5 ha (from 12ha) for crop will occur at the end of the month due to be drilled on the 10th October for Turnips. We are trying to co-ordinate our silage to align with this to make it cost effective adding to our existing stack (of 100tDM remaining).
  • Pre-mating heat detection and recording has started and 29% of cows were observed cycling in the first 7 days and another 21% in the second week. This information highlights any non-cycling cows that we can make decisions on in the next few weeks.
  • Mating will commence on the 30th of September. We have 100 sexed semen straws to use from the 5th October on the top 80% of BW cows. All other cows mated prior to and during this period will be mated with Premier sires. From the start of mating the bottom 25% of BW cows will be mated to Wagyu along with all cows that cycle from week 5 to week 7. After this the remaining cows will be mated with short gestation diary semen.
  • The Dosatron is delivering 100g MgCl/cow/day to all cows. The milking herds are getting 50-60g MgO/cow/day and 100g Limeflour/cow/day dusted onto the paddocks. This works out to be approximately 23g Mg/cow/day based on our estimated wastage and drinking volumes.
  • Feeding levels past week:
    • Dry cows: 8 kg DM grass
    • Milkers: 19.5 kg DM grass
  • We look forward to seeing you all next Wednesday 25th September to discuss in more detail.

Tuesday, 10 September 2019


10-9-19 wedge9-9-19 data table

Week ending 9-9-19 farm notes:

  • We now have 402 calved to date (3 left to calve - almost there!).
  • 113 replacement heifers are all now on OAD feeding, dehorned and the first mob of 41 calves weighing 60kg+ are enjoying their time outside.
  • Pasture growth rates have shot up to 61 kg DM/ha/day creating a slight increase in cover to 2151 kg DM/ha.
  • Area allocation at approximately 145m2/cow/day has slightly increased from last week and we are currently on a 25 day rotation which is ensuring the cows are being well feed and achieving desired residual. Pre-grazing covers ahead this week are around 2700 kgDM/ha which will be ideal for our stocking rate on a 22 day rotation allocating 19.5kgDM/c/day.
  • Grazing management focus is on using the wedge to allocate and monitor potential surplus/deficits.
  • Milk production is holding over 2kg MS/cow/day.
  • A wet period over the weekend provided challenges for mineral intake and pasture utilisation in some wetter paddocks. In order to prevent damage we accepted a higher residual to protect regrowth and supplemented both herds during this period with approx. 1 kg PKE/c/day. This strategy may be repeated in times of wet weather.
  • Pre-mating heat detection and recording has started and 29% of cows were observed cycling in the first 7 days.
  • Mating will commence on the 30th of September. We have 100 sexed semen straws to use from the 5th October on the top 80% of BW cows. All other cows mated prior to and during this period will be mated with Premier sires. From the start of mating the bottom 25% of BW cows will be mated to Wagyu along with all cows that cycle from week 5 to week 7. After this the remaining cows will be mated with short gestation diary semen.
  • The team have had a 4 day weekend to refresh after calving and get excited about the mating period ahead.
  • Heifer weights are averaging 276 kg which is 10kg below our target weight using Minda weights. This is a good improvement from where the weights in winter after a prolonged dry Autumn period. The heifers have averaged 0.64kg lwt/day from end of June to the end of August.  The 30% of heifers below target need to gain more than 0.8kg lwt/day to reach target. This highlights the importance of on-going communication with our grazier to ensure we maintain the rate of lwt gain and have strategies for at risk animals. Weight data is powerful for informed conversations.
  • We are pleased with the stability of the SCC this season despite the rough weather. With it consistently being under 150,000 we have discontinued weekly stripping.
  • The Dosatron is delivering 100g MgCl/cow/day to all cows. The milking herds are getting 50-60g MgO/cow/day and 100g Limeflour/cow/day dusted onto the paddocks. This works out to be approximately 23g Mg/cow/day based on our estimated wastage and drinking volumes.
  • Feeding levels past week:
    • Dry cows: 8 kg DM grass
    • Milkers: 19.5 kg DM grass
  • Planned feeding levels for next week:
    • Milkers: 20 kg DM grass

Tuesday, 3 September 2019


2-9-19 data tablefeed wedgeWeek ending 2-9-19 farm notes:

  • We now have 392 calved to date (96%).
  • 113 replacement heifers are all now on OAD feeding, dehorned and the first mob of 41 calves weighing 60kg+ have ventured outside.
  • Pasture growth rates have been 45 kg DM/ha/day with a slight drop in cover to 2125 kg DM/ha.
  • Area allocation at approximately 140m2/cow/day remains unchanged from last week and the 27 day rotation is ensuring the cows are being well feed and achieving desired residual. Looking at the feed wedge we can see that this coming week the rotation length will speed up as we enter pre-grazing covers of 2700-2800 kgDM/ha this is ideal for our stocking rate on a 22 day rotation allocating 19.5kgDM/c/day.
  • Grazing management focus from now on is using the wedge to allocate and monitor potential surplus/deficits.
  • Milk production is holding over 2kg MS/cow/day.
  • August-calving cows were metri-checked last week bringing our total number of cows treated to 11% (a marginal improvement on last year).
  • Only lame cows are receiving PKE at approx. 3 kg/c/day.
  • Interesting to look back at supplements feed this season to date compared with last season:
    • Total supplements 36tDM (2019) vs 210tDM (2018).
    • Of this 10t PKE has been purchased and feed (2019) vs 78t (2018).
  • We have used the good growth rates to take advantage of using home grown feed first to produce milk. Time has been spent on measuring and monitoring pasture to make accurate and timely feed allocation decisions.
  • The Dosatron is delivering 100g MgCl/cow/day to all cows. The milking herds are getting 50-60g MgO/cow/day and 100g Limeflour/cow/day dusted onto the paddocks. The colostrum mob are receiving 100g Limeflour/cow/day and 100g MgO/cow/day via PKE in the paddock.
  • The springers are on pasture only with 100g MgO/cow/day dusted on their break. Feeding levels past week:
    • Dry cows: 9 kg DM grass
    • Milkers: 19.5 kg DM grass

Tuesday, 27 August 2019


27-8-19 wedgeWeek ending 26-8-19 farm notes:

  • We now have 387 calved to date (95%) and cows mated to short gestation semen are calving.
  • 113 replacement heifers are all now on OAD feeding and the last 30 are being dehorned today. The calves are still inside and will remain there until the weather settles. The aim is to put the first mob of calves outside next week once they have been weighed. We just started taking milk from the vat to feed calves and are transitioning from kept colostrum.
  • Pasture growth rates have been 48 kg DM/ha/day with a slight drop in cover to 2139 kg DM/ha.
  • We averaged just over 142m2/cow/day allocation for the milking mob for the week, based on going into 2900 kg DM/ha, grazing down to 1500-1600 kg DM/ha. This was allocating an average of 18.5-19.5 kg DM grass/cow/day over the two herds for the week.
  • Rotation length at 28 days is slower than planned as per our SRP (22 day).
  • It’s been hard this week to achieve desired residuals with increasing area allocated. The weather has also meant that cows have been pulled from some wet paddocks earlier to prevent pasture damage.
  • Milk production is holding nicely at 2.1 kg MS/cow/day.
  • New cases of lameness have settled down to an expected level for the time of year with an average of 15 cows in this mob close to the shed.
  • August-calving cows are being metri-checked today and all cows tail painted BLUE to start pre-mating heat monitoring for our PSM in 4 weeks’ time. This provides a great opportunity to get everyone’s eye in before we start mating (this is particularly important for us as we are only AI mating again this year).
  • Bloat oil is being added to the water system to charge the troughs at a low rate so that all troughs have oil present before we get into bloat season.
  • For 3 milkings this week during wet weather the decision was made to use PKE as a carrier for MgO as it was too wet for effective dusting. Approx. 1kg/cow/day was used. Dusting has since continued with MgO being given at every feed (this is our preferred option).
  • The Dosatron is delivering 100g MgCl/cow/day to all cows. The milking herds are getting 100-120g MgO/cow/day dusted onto the paddocks. The colostrum mob are receiving 100g Limeflour/cow/day and 100g MgO/cow/day via PKE in the paddock.
  • The springers are on pasture only with 100g MgO/cow/day dusted on their break. Feeding levels past week:
    • Dry cows: 9 kg DM grass
    • First herd milkers: 19.5 kg DM grass
    • Second herd milkers: 18.5 kg DM grass
  • Feeding levels week ahead:
    • No changes expected
    • 26-8-19 data table

Tuesday, 20 August 2019


19-8-19 data table

20-8-19 wedge

Week ending 19-8-19 farm notes:

  • We now have 377 calved to date (91%) and cows mated to short gestation semen are calving.
  • 113 of the replacement heifers are all now on OAD feeding. This saves time in the afternoons. The calves are still inside and will remain there until the weather settles. Once they are eating a good amount of meal and the last mob has been dehorned and vaccinated, they can go outside.  Calves are being fed on stored milk with none taken from the vat.
  • Growth rates have reduced to 31 kg DM/ha/day with a drop in cover to 2152 kg DM/ha.
  • We averaged just over 104m2/cow/day allocation for the milking mob for the week, based on going into 3300 kg DM/ha, grazing down to 1500 kg DM/ha. This was allocating an average of 18.5 kg DM grass/cow/day over the 2 herds for the week.
  • Rotation length at 38.8 days is slower than planned as per our SRP (31 day).
  • Milker residuals have come closer to target: 1550 this week with some better weather and shorter pre-graze covers but larger areas.
  • Milk production is holding steady at 2.1 kg MS/cow/day.
  • We have continued our regular Thursday teat-stripping session to identify any new cases of mastitis. We have recommenced using our automatic teat sprayer so are awaiting a visit to review its accuracy, and ability to complete the task while maintaining a one-person shed.
  • Managing the lame herd separately has worked a treat, along with race work. Lame cows have now settled, with the majority of those lifted in the previous week back in the herd. The yard entrance and one intersection have been scraped off and resurfaced by a contractor; this has helped improve cow flow and hopefully the number of sore feet appearing each week. The remaining mob will join back in with the colostrum herd once they have finished the last break in their paddock.
  • This week we had the milking herd individually Body Condition Scored by Cambridge Vets. The average was 5.2 which is a very pleasing result after 6 weeks of average weather on a limited supplement diet. The valuable part of an individual BCS is to identify weight loss above average; we had 8 cows that had lost more than 1 BCS, 5 of these have had lameness issues, 1 metritis and 2 are still under investigation.
  • Unfortunately on Sunday night we lost three cows, the vets have taken samples to see if it was metabolics. Even though the break was dusted and water available it could still be an issue.
  • Bloat oil is now being added to the water system to charge the troughs at a low rate so that all troughs have oil present before we get into bloat season.
  • The sorghum silage has been shut up again while still allowing options to ensile more surplus grass if needed. Only 60 cows are receiving PKE – colostrum and lame cows.
  • The dosatron is delivering 100g MgCl/cow/day to all cows. The milking herds are getting 100-120g MgO/cow/day dusted onto the paddocks. The colostrum mob are receiving 100g Limeflour/cow/day and 100g MgO/cow/day via PKE in the paddock.
  • The springers are now just on grass with 100g MgO/cow/day dusted on their break. Feeding levels past week:
    • Springer mob + heifers: 8.5 kg DM grass
    • First herd milkers: 19 kg DM grass
    • Second herd milkers: 17.5 kg DM grass
  • Feeding levels week ahead:
    • No changes expected

Tuesday, 13 August 2019


12-8-19 data table

13-8-19 feed wedgeMilkersWeek ending 12-8-19 farm notes

  • We now have 358 calved to date (87%). All colostrum milk is being used to feed our growing mob of calves, including 113 replacement heifers with another few days of AB calves expected; cows mated to short gestation semen are already starting to calve.
  • Growth rates have shot up to 43 kg DM/ha/day with an increase in cover to 2229 kg DM/ha.
  • We averaged 92m2/cow/day allocation for the milking mob for the week, based on going into 3500 kg DM/ha, grazing down to 1500 kg DM/ha. This was allocating 17-17.5 kg DM grass/cow/day.  
  • Rotation length at 46 days is slower than planned as per our SRP (40 day).
  • Milker residuals have risen this week due to offering a little more area to counter the poor weather and reduced utilisation. Residuals were around 1600-1700 kg DM/ha. This will have implications for feed quality next round. We will either mow ahead next round or get back to them sooner, weather dependent. Dries (24) have only cleaned up two paddocks behind the milkers this week where we left a break at the back of the paddock so that the milkers could keep moving along.
  • Milk production at 2.09 kg MS/cow/day has continued to lift.
  • We have continued our regular Thursday teat-stripping session to identify any new cases of mastitis. We have had issues with the power supply to the controller on our teat spray so have been manually spraying each milking while we await a new part. While this has required an extra person for milking, it has allowed the chance to observe consistency of milking-out not often seen in a 1 person shed.
  • Lame cows have continued to be an issue, with 43 cows separated out from the milking herd to reduce walking distance and give extra attention to them. These have all been checked with none requiring antibiotic treatment.  The majority have shown white-line issues on their front right foot.  These have received a claw block.
  • The dosatron is delivering 80g MgCl/cow/day to all cows. The first herd of milkers are getting 40g MgO/cow/day dusted onto the paddocks. The second herd are receiving 100g Limeflour/cow/day and 60g MgO/cow/day via PKE in troughs on the race.  The colostrum mob are receiving 100g Limeflour/cow/day and 60g MgO/cow/day via PKE in the paddock.
  • The springers continue to receive sorghum silage (4kg DM/cow/day) to reduce total energy of the diet. The hay is being spared for later as we attempt to use up all the sorghum.
  • Feeding levels past week:
    • Springer mob + heifers: 5 kg DM grass + 4 kg DM sorghum
    • Late calvers: 9 kg DM grass
    • First herd milkers: 17.5 kg DM grass
    • Second herd milkers: 16 kg DM grass + 1 kg PKE
  • Feeding levels week ahead:
    • No changes expected
  • 105 of the replacement heifers are now on OAD feeding. This saves time in the afternoons.
  • Soil tests from the seven blocks of the farm were taken this week.

Tuesday, 6 August 2019


5-8-19 data table6-8-19 wedgeWeek ending 5-8-19 farm notes:

  • We now have 333 cows calved to date (80%). All colostrum milk is being used to feed our growing mob of calves, including 98 replacement heifers with another 1 week of AB calves expected; cows mated to short gestation semen are already starting to calve.
  • Growth rates are 23 kg DM/ha/day with a drop in cover to 2206 kg DM/ha.
  • We are currently using 85m2/cow/day allocation for the milking mob currently, based on going into 3500 kg DM/ha, grazing down to 1500 kg DM/ha. This is allocating 16 kg DM grass/cow/day, however for 3 days this area was increased to 114m2/cow/day to graze some mid wedge paddocks that measured low to no growth for the past month.
  • Rotation length is slightly faster than target at 47.5 days vs 50 as per our SRP. This represents the extra area allocated for some paddocks with 2700 pre-grazing in the hope of stimulating some growth. We are comfortable with this allocation that we will be able to hold the cows on an average of 3.2 ha/day for the coming week. Targeting 40 days by the 14th
  • Milker residuals are fairly consistently 1500 kg DM/ha so the dry cows have only grazed two paddocks over the last week. With only 39 dry cows left this mob will likely join with springers in the next week.
  • Milk production at 1.95 kg MS/cow/day has continued to lift.
  • We have continued our regular Thursday teat stripping session to identify any new cases of mastitis.
  • Metabolic issues have settled with only one mild case this week. The dosatron is delivering 80g MgCl/cow/day to all cows. The first herd of milkers are getting 40g MgO/cow/day dusted onto the paddocks. The second herd (which was created this week made up of recently calved cows and some lighter cows) are receiving 100g Limeflour/cow/day and 60g MgO/cow/day via PKE in troughs on the race.  The colostrum mob are receiving 100g Limeflour/cow/day and 60g MgO/cow/day via PKE in the paddock.
  • The springers continue to receive sorghum silage (3kg DM/cow/day) to reduce total energy of the diet. The hay is being spared for later as we attempt to use up all the sorghum.
  • Feeding levels past week:
    • Springer mob + heifers: 5 kg DM grass + 3 kg DM sorghum
    • Late calvers: 9 kg DM grass
    • First herd milkers: 16 kg DM grass
    • Second herd milkers: 14.5 kg DM grass + 1 kgPKE
  • Feeding levels week ahead:
    • No changes expected
  • 90 of the replacement heifers are now on OAD feeding. This saves time in the afternoons.
  • The vet came this week to metricheck 260 cows; 17 cows required metricure treatment. We also identified two empty heifers.
  • 85 of the calves were dehorned by the vets using sedation along with local anaesthetic and an anti-inflammatory treatment. This was a successful and stress-free process at a busy time of the year completed in 45 minutes. Lepto and 5n1 was administered at the same time.
  • In the week ahead we have planned soil tests for seven blocks of the farm and future N applications will be via Ammo 36 to replenish sulphur levels.
  • The team averaged 56 hours/person/week for the last six weeks which includes time to carry out the weekly farm walk and maintains the 12 days on/2 days off roster.

Tuesday, 30 July 2019


Week ending farm notes

wedge 30-7-19

 data table 29-7-19

  • We now have 312 cows calved to date (75%). All colostrum milk is being used to feed our growing mob of calves, including 95 replacement heifers with another 2 weeks of AB calves expected.
  • We are using 85m2/cow/day allocation for the milking mob currently, based on going into 3300 kg DM/ha, grazing down to 1500 kg DM/ha. This is allocating 15 kg DM grass/cow/day for a herd that has been calved for 4 weeks (feed eaten is approximately 80% of their peak intake). This will increase to 16 kg DM/cow/day next week with 50% of the cows having calved more than 3 weeks ago.
  • Milker residuals are getting closer to 1500 kg DM/ha so the dry cows have only grazed three paddocks over the last week. With only 50 dry cows left this mob will likely join with springers in the next week.
  • Milk production at 1.8 kg MS/cow/day has been a pleasing lift from last week.
  • We have worked hard on sorting the metabolic challenges in the milking herd and this week only had only one case in the springer mob – none in the milkers. Back calculations on the dosatron showed it was not dosing at the correct rate for litres consumed. This meant that cows were not receiving not enough Mg.  This is now adjusted to ensure the dose rate is 80g MgCl/cow/day.  We have been giving the milkers 100g Limeflour/cow/day and 50g MgO/cow/day via PKE troughs in the race (cows are eating approx. 1 kg PKE/cow/day).
  • We are continuing to strip check the milking mob once a week to identify any new cases of mastitis.
  • Colostrum cows are receiving 100g Limeflour/cow/day mixed with 1.7 kg PKE/cow/day fed via a trough in the paddock.
  • The springers continue to receive sorghum silage (1kg DM/cow/day) and hay (1kg DM hay/cow/day) to reduce total energy of the diet.
  • Growth rates have jumped up this week to 32 kg DM/ha/day with a drop in cover to 2360 kg DM/ha.
  • In order to get into lower covers to provide better quality feed for the milkers we took the opportunity with good weather to conserve some surplus. On Friday we cut 1.95ha for silage. This paddock was 4000kg DM/ha and was baled on Monday yielding approx. 5t DM.   We are now grazing covers less than 3500 with a target pre-grazing of 3300 for the coming week. No more paddocks are earmarked for silage at this stage.
  • 3 T of Sustain was applied over 35ha, at approx. 37 units N/ha. Targeting paddocks grazed over the last couple of weeks.
  • Rotation length is slightly faster than target at 59 days vs 60 as per our SRP.
  • Feeding levels past week:
    • Springer mob + heifers: 6 kg DM grass + 2 kg DM supplement
    • Late calvers: 9 kg DM grass
    • Milkers: 15 kg DM grass + 1kg PKE
  • Feeding levels week ahead:
    • Milkers: 16 kg DM grass + 1kg PKE
  • 85 of the replacement heifers are now on OAD feeding. This saves time in the afternoons.
  • We made the most of the dry weather to apply effluent over 7.3ha, this has reduced the pond levels to half way again.
  • The vet is booked in for this week to metricheck 70% of the herd and also PD any suspect empty heifers and dehorn 85 of the calves.
  • We have concerns over the yard entry area which we are looking to resurface (due to the base rock being exposed and stones coming onto the yard). We are starting to see some lameness and want prevent further issues.

 

Tuesday, 23 July 2019


23-07-19 wedge

Week ending farm notes 22/7/19:

  • Past the halfway mark with 260 calved to date (62%). All colostrum milk is being used to feed our growing mob of calves, including 83 replacement heifers.
  • We are using 85m2/cow/day allocation for the milking mob currently, based on going into 3500 kg DM/ha, grazing down to 1700 kg DM/ha. This is allocating 15 kg DM grass/cow/day and seems to be all they can eat at the moment for a herd that has been calved for 20 days (feed eaten is approximately 75% of their peak intake).
  • We carried out pasture analysis on the paddocks the milking cows are going into. Results indicate that CP ranged between 19-27.5%DM, digestibility 75-77%, ME 12-12.3.
  • Dry cows are following immediately behind the milking mob to reset the residual at 1450 kg DM/ha to promote good quality feed for the milkers in the next round. We plan to continue doing this for another week max.
  • Milk production at 1.6 kg MS/cow/day is tracking in a positive direction, although a little bit behind last year. This past week we have seen an increase in metabolic issues with 7 out of 9  milk fever cows in the last week coming from the milking herd.
  • Of note was the high K levels in the pasture samples. 2 of the 3 are within the effluent block and the other was grazed as a turnip crop last summer. This could also be contributing to our metabolic issues.
  • We have decided to start providing Limeflour to the milking mob via PKE in troughs on the race (approx. 1-1.5 kgPKE/c/day).
  • We are continuing to strip check the milking mob once a week to identify any new cases of mastitis.
  • Colostrum cows are receiving 100g Limeflour/cow/day mixed with 3 kg PKE/cow/day fed via a trough in the paddock.
  • The herd are now receiving 30 gm/c/d MgCl in the dosatron system.
  • The sorghum silage was 35%DM, CP 6.7%DM and ME 7.8MJME/kgDM. The springers receive sorghum silage and hay to reduce total energy of the diet.  High fibre supplement helps keep cows full for longer, keeps them warm and seems to help us avoid issues with udder oedema.
  • We are still seeing good growth rates averaging 23 kg DM/ha/day over the farm with a drop in cover to 2446 kg DM/ha.
  • We are planning to make decisions on paddocks with high cover that are excess to dry cows needs and that we don’t wish to graze with milkers. Approx 5ha is being monitored to determine if they will be a potential silage surplus in 7-10 days.
  • Rotation length is tracking bang on target at 72 days as per our SRP.
  • Feeding levels past week:
    • Springer mob: 5 kg DM grass + 4 kg DM supplement
    • IC heifers + early beef semen: 7 kg DM grass + 1.5 kg DM hay
    • Late calvers: 9 kg DM grass
    • Milkers: 15 kg DM grass
  • Feeding levels week ahead:
    • Milkers: 16 kg DM grass + 1kg PKE
  • Half off the replacement heifers are now on OAD feeding. This saves time in the afternoons.
  • Focus is on utilising the dry days to apply effluent as milking has created a raise in the pond level that we like to stay on top of.

Tuesday, 16 July 2019


15-7-19 data table 15-7-19 wedgeWeek ending farm notes

  • Nearly halfway through calving already!! 206 cows have calved to date. We started sending milk to the factory on Thursday. All colostrum milk is being used to feed our growing mob of calves, including 60 replacement heifers.
  • We are using 85m2/cow/day allocation for the milking mob currently, based on going into 3850 kg DM/ha, grazing down to 1850 kg DM/ha. This is allocating 17 kg DM grass/cow/day and preventing them from having to eat to the base of the sward.
  • Dry cows are following immediately behind the milking mob to reset the residual at 1450 kg DM/ha to promote good quality feed for the milkers in the next round. We plan to continue doing this for the next 10 days.
  • Milk production at 1.3 kg MS/cow/day is lower than last year given current BCS and feeding levels. We are sending off pasture samples to analyse the quality of the winter saved pasture currently being fed to the milking mob as well as the silage. It is early in the season and we are not too concerned.
  • Cell count was initially 299,000 which is higher than this time last year. Each colostrum cow is paddle checked before entering the herd but we decided to strip the whole herd on Saturday morning and identified two cows that were then treated for mastitis.
  • Colostrum cows are receiving 100g Limeflour/cow/day mixed with 3 kg PKE/cow/day fed via a trough in the paddock.
  • The herd are now receiving full rate MgCl in the dosatron system and all paddocks that are due to be grazed by mobs (approximately 60 ha) have been sprayed with Mg Sulphate.
  • Springers receive sorghum silage and hay to reduce total energy of the diet. High fibre supplement helps keep cows full for longer, keeps them warm and seems to help us avoid issues with udder oedema.
  • Despite a wet week we are still seeing good growth rates averaging 21 kg DM/ha/day over the farm with a slight drop in cover to 2525 kg DM/ha.
  • With a fast, early calving we are expecting to have a feed gap in the first week of August for the milking mob that we intend to fill with grass silage. We can already see evidence of this in the feed wedge.
  • Planning to apply Sustain next week (weather permitting) to paddocks that have been grazed in July that had high pre-grazing covers.
  • Rotation length is tracking bang on target at 83 days as per our SRP.
  • Feeding levels past week:
    • Springer mob: 5 kg DM grass + 4 kg DM supplement
    • IC heifers + early beef semen: 7 kg DM grass + 2 kg DM hay
    • Late calvers: 9 kg DM grass
    • Milkers: 17 kg DM grass
  • Feeding levels week ahead:
    • No planned changes to any mobs
  • The team had their rostered weekend off - one on Friday and Saturday and the other takes Sunday and Monday. Tom is due off next weekend so the focus in the coming days is on managing residuals and decision-making during the wet for the team.
  • If rain is predicted the springer mob will have a small break set up ready to be fed first thing in the morning prior to milking to prevent pasture damage, with the remainder of the break given after milking. This provides feed for freshly calved cows and is within the designated area allocation for the mob. This week it has been done more than half the week.
  • The first mob of calves that is older than 1 week has now been put onto OAD feeding. This saves time in the afternoons.

Monday, 8 July 2019


8-7-19 data table9-7-19 feed wedgeWeek ending farm notes 8-7-19

 

Monday, 1 July 2019


Week ending farm notes 01 July 2019

 

  • Cover at 2558 kg DM/ha is declining after our second week of soil temperatures recorded below 10C. Growth rates have averaged 16 kg DM/ha/day.
  • Pasture growth has fallen below daily demand, but unseasonably high covers remain a challenge.
  • We have lightly grazed the highest cover paddocks (9ha) over the last week to reduce the cover in these by approx. 400kg DM/ha each.
  • We have sped up the round a little in the last week by re-drafting the herds and feeding based on calving date, and have lifted our residuals target to 1500kg DM/ha.








Load More

Contact Details:

  • Louise Cook
  • Demonstration Manager
  • Owl Farm
  •  +64 7 827 9817
  •  +64 27 808 5777
  •  enquiries@owlfarm.nz

Newsletter Sign-up: