31 July 1998

Wet forces housing

CONTINUED wet weather is forcing many Scottish and northern dairy farmers to house their cows.

Some are on full winter rations, other are being buffer fed and allowed out to graze only for short periods.

SAC dairy adviser Jimmy Goldie says farmers should find individual solutions to suit each farm. "But beware some feeds which look like bargains but may not be when feeding value is considered," he warns.

"Some potato waste products, for example, are low in dry matter and, after haulage, may not be a cheap feed. But there are enough feeds around like vegetables which can be balanced with distillery by-products until harvest grain becomes available," says Mr Goldie.

"Producers should also remember that, although they want to avoid grassland being poached, it has a great ability to recover," he adds. &#42