Walford update – May 2021

We look at the latest news and update on Walford College farm’s performance.

Current situation:

The cows continue to milk well producing an average of 22L per cow but the fat percentage has dropped off, it is now sitting at 3.8%, proteins have held at 3.3%.

Currently the cows are being fed 3.5% corn, 3KgDM maize and 12kgDM of grass, the amount of grass has been cut back and maize brought back into the ration.

There are cows, R2 heifers and R1 heifers on the milking platform but with growth rate remaining low (37KgDM), the R1’s are going to be moved off to allow for standing hay to be grown. The R1’s are showing good growth rates and their intake of grass is going well.

Some cows were weighed which delivered some interesting results, please tune into the upcoming webinar (on Wednesday June 19) to see where the weights sit and what this means going forward.

LIC's recommendations:

  • Standing hay needs to be shut up from the 21st of June and progressively shut to meet the cows needs. 2.2ha for August, 7.26ha for September and 2.55ha for October. The October standing hay could end up being wasted as the weather changes so going for a larger area and not shutting it up for as long will help to reduce waste.
  • Silage requirements for 168 days of feeding for 200 cows at 8KgDM of maize and 6KgDM of grass silage is 298TDM of maize and 224TDM of grass silage allowing for 10% wastage through feeding out

  • Grass needs to be 75% digestibility or greater at time of harvesting to ensure quality.
  • To keep the grass in this higher level of quality will mean cutting at lower volumes and taking more cuts.
by Katrina Younger
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