Livestock top stories

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

Why multicut silage worth higher contracting fees for farmer

Switching from four cuts of silage to six is helping a Welsh dairy produce an extra £72,000 worth of milk sold. While the additional cost of cutting grass more frequently…

TAKING STOCK

Ewe throughputs suggest younger flocks in 2019

A trend towards stricter spring culling policies has resulted in a steady throughput of cull sheep at some UK auction marts, which have met a rising trade through the lambing…

SHEEP

Guidance issued on high-welfare sheep shearing

Industry organisations have produced a guide reminding farmers and professional contractors how to handle sheep during shearing to ensure they are not stressed or injured. The joint guidance, which has…

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

When to treat grassland weeds for best kill results

Most chemical weed applications fail because farmers apply too late, according to independent grassland consultant George Fisher. “Timing is critical when treating weeds. You need the chemical to absorb through…

WHATS IN YOUR LIVESTOCK SHED

What's In Your Livestock Shed? visits £130,000 cubicle shed

Hiring an entire milking herd has nearly doubled cow numbers at a Pembrokeshire dairy farm, but with expansion came winter housing challenges. For father and son Geraint and Simon John…

FARMER FOCUS

Farmer Focus: A new venture into pigs this year

As a young farming couple, we are often looking at opportunities to expand and diversify the business and see the importance of spreading our risk, particularly with the imminent threat…

Livestock news

LIVESTOCK DISEASES

Beef producer calls for BVD control to be made compulsory

A beef farmer is calling for bovine viral diarrhoea (BVD) testing in cattle to be made compulsory across Britain after he bought calves that later succumbed to the disease. James Winslade said…

CRIME

‘Alarming’ rise in sheep rustling, say rural police

A cross-industry initiative to raise awareness of sheep rustling and what to do about suspicious activity is necessary to fight the mounting menace of sheep rustling, an NFU adviser has…

PIGS

Spate of swine dysentery cases highlights importance of hygiene

Following several new cases of swine dysentery in recent weeks, producers are being encouraged to clamp down on biosecurity to minimise risk. Swine dysentery is a bacterial disease that can…

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MARCH
13

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GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

A guide to soil mapping and variable-rate fertiliser

Routinely used in the arable sector for a number of years, soil mapping is catching on among grassland farmers as a means of better targeting nutrients and driving overall farm…

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

Why multicut silage worth higher contracting fees for farmer

Switching from four cuts of silage to six is helping a Welsh dairy produce an extra £72,000 worth of milk sold. While the additional cost of cutting grass more frequently…

SHEEP

Guidance issued on high-welfare sheep shearing

Industry organisations have produced a guide reminding farmers and professional contractors how to handle sheep during shearing to ensure they are not stressed or injured. The joint guidance, which has…

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

When to treat grassland weeds for best kill results

Most chemical weed applications fail because farmers apply too late, according to independent grassland consultant George Fisher. “Timing is critical when treating weeds. You need the chemical to absorb through…

WHATS IN YOUR LIVESTOCK SHED

What's In Your Livestock Shed? visits £130,000 cubicle shed

Hiring an entire milking herd has nearly doubled cow numbers at a Pembrokeshire dairy farm, but with expansion came winter housing challenges. For father and son Geraint and Simon John…

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

Advice on soil compaction: Which methods to choose

Soils damaged by livestock and machinery significantly reduce the uptake of essential nutrients – they will run off the surface instead of being taken down to the roots. And the…

PIGS

The options for getting into pig farming

The Welsh government and the European Union are investing £1.29m to support and develop the pig sector in Wales. With Wales only 5% self-sufficient in pigmeat the government believes opportunities…

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

Why farmers could be applying lime to the wrong fields

Grassland farmers are being advised to prioritise better-performing leys when liming to ensure they yield the highest return on investment. There is a misconception that rebalancing low pH levels should…

DAIRY

4 ways top dairy farmers produce 1,000kg of MS a cow

Recent figures show the top 15% of Kite Consulting’s clients are producing between 840-1,000kg of milk solids (MS) a cow a year. Genetic data and management strategies were assessed from…

SHEEP

How a Cumbrian farm saved £18 a ewe

A complete change of mindset has seen a Cumbrian farm halve variable costs a ewe tupped from £34 to £16.53 in just five years.   Paul and Nicola Renison moved…

STAFF MANAGEMENT

7 top tips for communicating with farm staff

Do you find your staff often misunderstand you and are they ignoring your instructions? Or are you finding your staff are complaining that they don’t know what’s happening around the…

BREEDING AND FERTILITY

6 ways to prevent stale dairy cows

Getting into the habit of giving cows numerous chances to get pregnant can lead to more animals with extended lactations and a negative fertility cycle that is hard to break.…

FEED AND NUTRITION

How to identify and overcome cow issues in the dry period

A leading expert on cow management believes on most farms there is a failure in the transition period, with almost 65% of problems occurring in the dry cow/fresh cow period.…

DAIRY

How £2.5m dairy unit is improving dry cow management

Good management during the dry period is crucial to promote cow welfare and ensure the profitability of dairy cows in the following lactation. The College of Agriculture Food & Rural…

HOUSING AND HANDLING

How to stop dirty cattle going to slaughter - and why it matters

Abattoirs are reporting higher levels of dirty cattle being presented for slaughter, citing the availability and price of bedding as a reason for this. The British Meat Processors Association (BMPA)…

FEED AND NUTRITION

How supplementary milk can improve piglet and sow production

Advances in a sow’s genetic ability to produce more live born piglets are forcing farmers to look at ways to better support the sow and her offspring. With only 12-14…

Taking Stock

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TAKING STOCK

Ewe throughputs suggest younger flocks in 2019

A trend towards stricter spring culling policies has resulted in a steady throughput of cull sheep at some UK auction marts, which have met a rising trade through the lambing…

TAKING STOCK

Spring store trade hit by low beef values

Struggling finished beef prices have led to a mixed store cattle trade this spring, with short-keep stores hit the hardest. Prices for yearlings and grazing types remain mostly firm but…

TAKING STOCK

Holstein takes interbreed at Bumper Borderway Expo

Visitors from across the UK and as far afield as Finland, Spain and Guatemala headed to the eighth Borderway UK Dairy Expo on Saturday (9 March) to admire 70 high-quality…

TAKING STOCK

Hogget trade remains steady despite 13% supply drop

Great British average hogget SQQs (standard quality quotation) have remained below the 200p/kg mark so far this year despite a 13% drop in supply on the year. The country’s marts…

Meat markets and prices

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TAKING STOCK

Ewe throughputs suggest younger flocks in 2019

A trend towards stricter spring culling policies has resulted in a steady throughput of cull sheep at some UK auction marts, which have met a rising trade through the lambing…

MEAT MARKETS AND PRICES

Analysis: Are beef prices likely to rise soon?

An over-supply of beef is the cause behind falling prices, with a reversal not expected until the majority of finishing stock are turned out and Brexit uncertainty is resolved. Increased…

MEAT MARKETS AND PRICES

Lamb prices start to lift as buyers look ahead to Easter

Lamb prices are showing signs of lifting as buyers start to gear up early for the Easter market. Latest figures released by AHDB show that in the week ending 14…

TAKING STOCK

Spring store trade hit by low beef values

Struggling finished beef prices have led to a mixed store cattle trade this spring, with short-keep stores hit the hardest. Prices for yearlings and grazing types remain mostly firm but…

MEAT MARKETS AND PRICES

UK sees greater lamb price drop than other EU member states

UK prime sheep prices have fallen by about 4% over the past month and stand about 13% lower than a year ago, a much greater level of year-on-year reduction than…

TAKING STOCK

Hogget trade remains steady despite 13% supply drop

Great British average hogget SQQs (standard quality quotation) have remained below the 200p/kg mark so far this year despite a 13% drop in supply on the year. The country’s marts…

FARMER FOCUS

Farmer Focus: Seasonal calving is a game of cat and mouse

The south-east coast of Ireland is home to our family dairy farm, where my husband Neil and I have taken over the reins from my father Michael. Neil and I…

FARMER FOCUS

Farmer Focus: China culling hard for African swine fever

I was fortunate enough to go to Twickenham for the England v France game and also to Cardiff for the Wales v England game. Although England lost the Wales game…

FARMER FOCUS

Farmer Focus: A new venture into pigs this year

As a young farming couple, we are often looking at opportunities to expand and diversify the business and see the importance of spreading our risk, particularly with the imminent threat…

FARMER FOCUS

Farmer Focus: Early spring has a sting in the tail

What an awesome spring. I can finally say we have had the milkers out in February. Our collective euphoria was short-lived as March has seen resumption of normal service (snow…

Dairy

COMPLIANCE

NI farmers oppose tougher Red Tractor inspections

Plans by Red Tractor to introduce unannounced inspections in the UK dairy and poultry sectors this spring have met with strong opposition in Northern Ireland. The quality assurance scheme started rolling…

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

Why multicut silage worth higher contracting fees for farmer

Switching from four cuts of silage to six is helping a Welsh dairy produce an extra £72,000 worth of milk sold. While the additional cost of cutting grass more frequently…

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

When to treat grassland weeds for best kill results

Most chemical weed applications fail because farmers apply too late, according to independent grassland consultant George Fisher. “Timing is critical when treating weeds. You need the chemical to absorb through…

WHATS IN YOUR LIVESTOCK SHED

What's In Your Livestock Shed? visits £130,000 cubicle shed

Hiring an entire milking herd has nearly doubled cow numbers at a Pembrokeshire dairy farm, but with expansion came winter housing challenges. For father and son Geraint and Simon John…

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

Advice on soil compaction: Which methods to choose

Soils damaged by livestock and machinery significantly reduce the uptake of essential nutrients – they will run off the surface instead of being taken down to the roots. And the…

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

Why farmers could be applying lime to the wrong fields

Grassland farmers are being advised to prioritise better-performing leys when liming to ensure they yield the highest return on investment. There is a misconception that rebalancing low pH levels should…

DAIRY

4 ways top dairy farmers produce 1,000kg of MS a cow

Recent figures show the top 15% of Kite Consulting’s clients are producing between 840-1,000kg of milk solids (MS) a cow a year. Genetic data and management strategies were assessed from…

HEALTH AND WELFARE

How buying in cows can connect a holding to over 1,000 farms

Buying in cattle can connect a holding to more than 1,000 other farms in any given year, an analysis of British Cattle Movement Survey (BCMS) data has found. An exploration…

LIVESTOCK DISEASES

Beef producer calls for BVD control to be made compulsory

A beef farmer is calling for bovine viral diarrhoea (BVD) testing in cattle to be made compulsory across Britain after he bought calves that later succumbed to the disease. James Winslade said…

BREEDING AND FERTILITY

6 ways to prevent stale dairy cows

Getting into the habit of giving cows numerous chances to get pregnant can lead to more animals with extended lactations and a negative fertility cycle that is hard to break.…

FEED AND NUTRITION

How to identify and overcome cow issues in the dry period

A leading expert on cow management believes on most farms there is a failure in the transition period, with almost 65% of problems occurring in the dry cow/fresh cow period.…

DAIRY

How £2.5m dairy unit is improving dry cow management

Good management during the dry period is crucial to promote cow welfare and ensure the profitability of dairy cows in the following lactation. The College of Agriculture Food & Rural…

Livestock machinery

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FORAGERS

Claas builds 40,000th Jaguar forage harvester

A landmark Jaguar self-propelled forager recently rolled off the production line at Claas HQ in Harsewinkel, Germany – the 40,000th model since 1973. The original SF60 that started the ball…

FORAGERS

AD firm urges contractors to charge higher, sustainable rates

AD plant management firm Future Biogas has taken the unusual step of encouraging the contractors it employs to charge sustainable rates in order to build a long-lasting and performance-focused relationship.…

TRACTORS

On test: Valtra's 100hp A104 HiTech4

Valtra is on a relentless offensive to ram-pack its tractor ranges with near limitless engine, transmission and cab spec combinations. The latest versions to be flung into its smallest A-series…

TELEHANDLERS

JCB wins court injunction against bitter rival Manitou

JCB has been granted a preliminary injunction by a French court against competitor Manitou to stop the French firm from building telehandlers featuring a patented device. The ruling by the…