Over the past 4-6-weeks, farmers throughout the country have begun their first and second cuts of silage in preparation of next Winter.
Many have opted for hay as opposed to silage, due to the promising weather conditions; however, grass regrowth has practically ceased due to drought conditions.
That’s Farming has been in discussion with farmers around the country and the majority have noted that their silage yields have fallen behind on previous years. They also have concerns that straw will be difficult to acquire this year and they may not be in a financial position to pay the high prices that are being sought, following on from the prolonged winter period.
Concerns continue to mount as the current drought conditions which have led to grass shortages and unavailability have forced the immediate sale of many herds.
Teagasc has set up a helpline for farmers who want to speak to an advisor regarding options for feeding stock given the continuing decline in grass growth rates throughout the country. Farmers can contact this helpline at 087- 7971377 from 9am to 9pm each day. There are also a series of clinics and events taking place around the country where advice will be available for farmers.
Currently, Teagasc and the interagency group are carrying out a fodder census to establish the levels of silage in pits which was meant for feeding next winter. Results are expected within days but indications are that most farms had good yields of first cut silage.