Livestock top stories

FARMER FOCUS

Farmer Focus: Yield down but feeling positive about new shed

I am writing this article the day after we put cows into our new shed for the first time. This always comes with a big sense of pride, but also…

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

4 ways to acheive high grass growth in an organic system

Achieving high grass yields without the use of artificial fertilisers is one of the main challenges for organic livestock producers. Understanding soil health is fundamental in order to create a…

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

Advice on tackling bloat in cattle

Bloat, also known as ruminal tympany, is a build-up of gas within the rumen and reticulum due to a failure to eructate (belch). Bloat may be considered primary or secondary.…

FARMER FOCUS

Farmer Focus: Coping through cold weather and machinery woes

The pedigree ewes decided that the lovely weather in the first week of February was too nice to lamb in. Instead, we had a real challenge when lambs came in…

TAKING STOCK

Stirling: Bumper Shorthorn sale sees Meonside break record

Two breed records were set in the Beef Shorthorn ring at Stirling on Sunday 21 February – a record bull price and a record sale average. Trade rocketed more than…

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

A guide to applying nitrogen on grassland early in the season

Applying fertiliser in February can provide grazed grass at less than half the cost of the silage on a dry matter (DM) equivalent basis, providing the right choices are made…

Livestock news

FEED AND NUTRITION

Replace imported soya to cut carbon on pig farms, study says

Replacing imported soya with protein derived from home-grown crops for livestock feeds has the biggest potential to reduce the carbon footprint of UK pig farms, a new study has found.…

TAKING STOCK

Carlisle Limousin bulls average lifts £1,400 to £8,118

Averages were buoyed by spirited pedigree and commercial bidding at Carlisle’s Limousin sale on Saturday (20 February), as 11 lots passed the 10,000gns mark. Ringside buyers competed with bids over…

TAKING STOCK

Stirling: Galcantray herd tops Angus sale at 15,000gns

A strong Angus trade topped with the Galcantray herd at 15,000gns and seven other five-figure calls on Saturday (20 February). Prices did not reach the 25,000gns highs of last year,…

TAKING STOCK

Flocks invest to lift ewe and lamb outfits by £10 a life

Flocks have ploughed last year’s profits back into breeding sheep, lifting many in-lamb ewes by £30 on the year and ewes with lambs by £10 a life. Exeter and Sedgemoor’s…

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SLURRY AND MANURE MANAGEMENT

How organic beef farmers are benefiting from fermenting muck

Organic beef farmers Andy and Nicola Morris have reduced muck-handling requirements by fermenting organic matter and are improving soil health in a quest to sequester carbon. The couple, who run…

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

4 ways to acheive high grass growth in an organic system

Achieving high grass yields without the use of artificial fertilisers is one of the main challenges for organic livestock producers. Understanding soil health is fundamental in order to create a…

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

Advice on tackling bloat in cattle

Bloat, also known as ruminal tympany, is a build-up of gas within the rumen and reticulum due to a failure to eructate (belch). Bloat may be considered primary or secondary.…

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

A guide to applying nitrogen on grassland early in the season

Applying fertiliser in February can provide grazed grass at less than half the cost of the silage on a dry matter (DM) equivalent basis, providing the right choices are made…

FEED AND NUTRITION

Forage analysis and how to interpret results on-farm

Forage analysis plays a vital role in feeding and management decisions. Understanding the analysis process and being able to interpret sample results will help farmers better utilise their forage –…

LIVESTOCK DISEASES

Advice on tackling scour during lambing and calving

Diarrhoea or scour is the most common disease in young animals and, as a result, is the greatest single cause of poor growth and mortality. The direct cost of treating…

FEED AND NUTRITION

How milk replacer improves margins for surplus lambs

Research trials have shown rearing surplus lambs on milk replacer could clear a margin of £40 a head in a strong market. Two simultaneous trials were carried out last spring…

LIVESTOCK

Flooring improvements help dairy unit cut lameness by 10%

New housing for 400 cows and improvements to older buildings at Grant Hartman’s dairy farm have done much to improve cow comfort and lameness. Cubicles have deep sand beds, suitable…

YOUNGSTOCK MANAGEMENT

Tips on getting reluctant calves to suck a bottle

There are few things more frustrating than an otherwise seemingly healthy calf that just refuses to suck. In this article, vet Nichol Fisher from Daleside Veterinary Group discusses some of…

PIGS

Environmental pig permits: Everything you need to comply

Pig farmers must comply with new requirements for environmental permits from 21 February, with key changes relating to slurry store coverage and ammonia emissions reporting. With an increasing number of…

YOUNGSTOCK MANAGEMENT

How the Islavale Simmental herd manages 15% twins

Close attention to twin-bearing cows and milky, prolific genetics is helping a Scottish breeder regularly rear more than 100% calves to cows bulled. The Islavale herd of Berryleys Farm, near…

LIVESTOCK

5 tips for successfully feeding newborn lambs

Lambs are at their most vulnerable in their first 48 hours because they are born with no circulating antibodies and are exposed to infection for the first time. Feeding plenty…

LAMBING

Top tips for managing vet students at lambing

Lambing placements offer a window into the sheep industry, and should be seen by farmers as a good investment, says vet Emily Gascoigne of Synergy Farm Health. They might even…

PIGS

Video: Norfolk pig farmers showcase creep-feeder inventions

The days of sows pilfering expensive creep feed are over on two outdoor pig units in Norfolk, which have each designed a feeder to prepare piglets for life after weaning.…

BOVINE TB

3 steps to implement a bovine TB contingency plan

Farmers should carry out a three-step contingency plan to ensure they are prepared for the stress and potential financial implications of a TB breakdown. This is according to Sarah Tomlinson…

DAIRY

How milking robot data saved a dairy farmer £15,000 on feed

When robotic milker George Lester scaled back concentrate feed for his late lactating milkers from 5-6kg to 1kg a cow a day to reduce milk production two weeks before drying…

Taking Stock

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TAKING STOCK

Stirling: Bumper Shorthorn sale sees Meonside break record

Two breed records were set in the Beef Shorthorn ring at Stirling on Sunday 21 February – a record bull price and a record sale average. Trade rocketed more than…

TAKING STOCK

Carlisle Limousin bulls average lifts £1,400 to £8,118

Averages were buoyed by spirited pedigree and commercial bidding at Carlisle’s Limousin sale on Saturday (20 February), as 11 lots passed the 10,000gns mark. Ringside buyers competed with bids over…

TAKING STOCK

Stirling: Galcantray herd tops Angus sale at 15,000gns

A strong Angus trade topped with the Galcantray herd at 15,000gns and seven other five-figure calls on Saturday (20 February). Prices did not reach the 25,000gns highs of last year,…

TAKING STOCK

Flocks invest to lift ewe and lamb outfits by £10 a life

Flocks have ploughed last year’s profits back into breeding sheep, lifting many in-lamb ewes by £30 on the year and ewes with lambs by £10 a life. Exeter and Sedgemoor’s…

Meat markets and prices

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MARKETS AND TRENDS

Depleted lamb stocks drive up prices

Sheep farmers have begun to draw ewe lambs from replacements to capitalise on deadweight prices that have marched through the £6/kg mark. AHDB figures for the week ending 20 February,…

BUSINESS

Morrisons slashes pork prices to boost demand

Retailer Morrisons has slashed pork prices on its supermarket shelves in a bid to boost demand and reduce the backlog of pigs on British farms. The National Pig Association (NPA)…

MEAT MARKETS AND PRICES

Rise in beef exports to Japan shows trade opportunities

UK beef exports to Japan were worth £5.4m in 2020 - a significant rise on the previous year, new figures show. Last year, 1,581t of beef and offal was shipped…

BUSINESS

Cold snap adds further boost to 'unbelievable' lamb prices

British lamb prices continue to climb, with marketing specialists suggesting the recent cold snap has further limited supplies and given added impetus to rising values. AHDB figures show liveweight old…

TAKING STOCK

Flocks invest to lift ewe and lamb outfits by £10 a life

Flocks have ploughed last year’s profits back into breeding sheep, lifting many in-lamb ewes by £30 on the year and ewes with lambs by £10 a life. Exeter and Sedgemoor’s…

TAKING STOCK

Lambs hit new year high as volume drops 9.8%

Prime lamb values have recovered lost ground to sit at a Great Britain average of 274p/kg on Monday (8 February). Tight supplies have driven prices and seen stores and ewe…

FARMER FOCUS

Farmer Focus: Yield down but feeling positive about new shed

I am writing this article the day after we put cows into our new shed for the first time. This always comes with a big sense of pride, but also…

FARMER FOCUS

Farmer Focus: Coping through cold weather and machinery woes

The pedigree ewes decided that the lovely weather in the first week of February was too nice to lamb in. Instead, we had a real challenge when lambs came in…

FARMER FOCUS

Farmer Focus: Local shopping trend gives us a great chance

It’s three-and-a-half years since I started contributing to this column, and my time has come to an end. It has been a bit of a roller-coaster, from the lows when…

FARMER FOCUS

Farmer Focus: Quads in hill sheep is frankly just stupid

We have just scanned the fell sheep, which came in a little bit too high at 164%. This is 14% higher than we would ideally have liked because while twins…

Dairy

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

4 ways to acheive high grass growth in an organic system

Achieving high grass yields without the use of artificial fertilisers is one of the main challenges for organic livestock producers. Understanding soil health is fundamental in order to create a…

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

Advice on tackling bloat in cattle

Bloat, also known as ruminal tympany, is a build-up of gas within the rumen and reticulum due to a failure to eructate (belch). Bloat may be considered primary or secondary.…

FEED AND NUTRITION

Forage analysis and how to interpret results on-farm

Forage analysis plays a vital role in feeding and management decisions. Understanding the analysis process and being able to interpret sample results will help farmers better utilise their forage –…

LIVESTOCK DISEASES

Advice on tackling scour during lambing and calving

Diarrhoea or scour is the most common disease in young animals and, as a result, is the greatest single cause of poor growth and mortality. The direct cost of treating…

LIVESTOCK

Flooring improvements help dairy unit cut lameness by 10%

New housing for 400 cows and improvements to older buildings at Grant Hartman’s dairy farm have done much to improve cow comfort and lameness. Cubicles have deep sand beds, suitable…

YOUNGSTOCK MANAGEMENT

Tips on getting reluctant calves to suck a bottle

There are few things more frustrating than an otherwise seemingly healthy calf that just refuses to suck. In this article, vet Nichol Fisher from Daleside Veterinary Group discusses some of…

BEEF

Breedr launches cattle trading platform

Beef and dairy farmers can buy and sell livestock commission-free using the free Breedr app. The app, which was launch in March last year, has recently developed a live trading…

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

How new dairy tech is being used globally by farmers

Two farmers shared their experiences of using some of the latest dairy technology on their farms at a DairyTech grazing webinar (9 February). Find out how the two technologies –…

BOVINE TB

3 steps to implement a bovine TB contingency plan

Farmers should carry out a three-step contingency plan to ensure they are prepared for the stress and potential financial implications of a TB breakdown. This is according to Sarah Tomlinson…

DAIRY

How milking robot data saved a dairy farmer £15,000 on feed

When robotic milker George Lester scaled back concentrate feed for his late lactating milkers from 5-6kg to 1kg a cow a day to reduce milk production two weeks before drying…

FEED AND NUTRITION

Guide to magnesium supplementation in cattle

New research has found magnesium from rock sources, such as magnesium oxide, has about half the absorption level as previously thought. But with costs on the up and potentially a…

AWARDS

Farmers Weekly Awards 2020: Dairy Farmer of the Year

Robert Mallett, Dickson and Mallett, Northleaze Farm, Highworth, Swindon Robert Mallett is the 2020 Farmers Weekly Dairy Farmer of the Year. His approach to dairy farming is proof that high-yielding…

Livestock machinery

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MACHINERY

FW Inventions Competition 2021: Purpose-built 24ft trailer

Intermediate category third place Andrew Patchett and Paul Alderson’s lambing trailer A purpose-built 24ft trailer designed by Andrew Patchett and Paul Alderson has transformed the back-breaking job of loading ewes…

WORKSHOP SKILLS

FW Inventions Competition 2021: Willie Dean’s grass pick-up

Intermediate category winner Willie Dean’s Xtra Chop In an effort to get shorter, more consistent chop lengths in grass harvested with forage wagons, Willie Dean, of Clockeasy Contracting near Elgin,…

WORKSHOP SKILLS

Inventions Competition 2021: John Baines’ single-pass forager

Complex category runner-up John Baines’ single-pass forager Farm manager John Baines runs a sideline machinery building/contracting business and one of his recent ventures has been to flail, collect and haul…

TELEHANDLERS

JCB ups Loadall power and expands transmission options

JCB has updated its series 3 Loadalls to meet the all-important Stage 5 emissions targets and, at the same time, added the Dualtech VT gearbox to more models. The firm…