A new tractor, cows milking over 37 litres, cows out to grass early, calving due to commence in the coming weeks, new calving facilities and cameras installed and much more. Find out what else happened this week on today's Dairy Update!
Farm: Dairy farm, milking 140 Holstein Friesian’s in farm partnership with his father.
Location: Mizen Head, West Cork.
Performance: 17 litres, 4.90Butterfat, 3.88 Protein, SCC - 160
This Week -
I Hope everyone one got on well over the Christmas and are well rested for the spring ahead!
Cows are ticking over nicely with the milk at the minute. With the weather being so mild and land drying up, we will probably let the stale cows out on grass for the week to clean off a few paddocks so we can apply slurry on them. Also, it will help spare some silage.
In terms of calving, the first few heifers and cows are springing away. They will be starting to calve in the next week or so. With the new calving facilties and other yard improvements finished, life should be a lot easier this spring.
We installed a rotating camera in the calving shed that we can view on any smart device or TV, so where ever we are we can always check what's happening in there. Also, we installed a small milking pump up on a wall for milking calved cows for colostrum. It will save us taking them to the milking parlour and washing it out etc.
We are starting to work with a nutritionist this year for the milking cow diets, to get the most potential out of the cows. Silage samples were sent away this week. Once the results are back, we will get a diet formulated for the milkers.
The Week Ahead -
All doses are done now, one of endo fluke one of zanil. Cows will get fastnex as they calve.
Any of the cows calving in the next 4 weeks also got the scour vaccine. At €7 a cow it's not cheap, but we find it helps big time with calves and scour.
The last of the beet will be pulled this week as ground conditions allow. We will also try and get some slurry out in places. I won't bother putting out any fertilizer until the end of January, as who knows what the weather will bring as its very unnatural.
Name: Christy McCarthy
Farm: 55 cows (35 Ped Holsteins and 25 Ped Jersey) on 60-acres.
Location: Shanaway East, Balineen Co. Cork.
Performance: Butterfat - 4.11, Protein - 3.32, Lactose - 4.73, SCC-96, Avg SCC 96
This Week -
Well it's new year again and what a start to the year it is with the great weather and good ground conditions. So good has it been that today we have left the milking cows out to some fields with good cover.
We would always left them out on St. Patrick’s day, but they will hopefully get a good long grass session now this year. With only 3 cows calving over Christmas, things have been quiet with some spot-on been put on some heifers. Protein is a bit low at the moment, but with some cows yielding over 37 litres you couldn't give out about it.
The Week Ahead -
With a new year, we have a new purchase on the farm, but not of the cow kind. On the 3rd of January, we got our new tractor, A Case 115 Maximum. With the old Massey gone with and the comfort and power we got in the Case, we are hoping she will give us many years of service, just like the Massey.
Latest GDT Auction results - January 2nd (Next Auction - January 15th)
The latest GDT auction held on January 2nd saw further increases in sales, +2.8%. The average price was at $2,986 with 115 winning bidders and 15 bidding rounds in total. There was 28,651 MT in total sold, with the biggest increase in prices witnessed in Butter Milk Powder, +9.3%.
Skim Milk Powder also saw a big increase in prices, up by +7.9%. Butter and Anhydrous Milk Fat both saw prices increase by +3.9%, while cheddar prices increased by +3.2%. Other increases were witnessed in Rennet Casein (+1.3%), Lactose (+1.6%) and Whole Milk Powder prices (+1.2%) to cap yet another auction of increased prices.