The cold weather continued through all of last month along with a huge amount of rain and sleet resulting in having to take cows and calves back inside in order to give the young calves some shelter.
The amount of rain has turned the dry ideal ground conditions into sodden fields which cannot carry machinery in some areas, causing frustration with the larger potato and vegetable growers.
We were lucky when the weather got really bad we had enough room in the lambing shed and polytunnel to be able to keep the last ewes and young lambs inside for a couple of weeks until it was drier. But, unfortunately, even all the strong lambs outside didn’t survive the combination of cold and wet.
Grass growth has also been slowed down by the cold. I did wonder if the store cattle trade would be affected, but took the chance and sold the remainder of last year’s spring calves at the end of April. Although the edge was off the trade, I was pleased with my 3/4 Simmental yearling heifers selling to a top of £1,200.
Despite the weather we have had a good calving with strong calves and one 11-year-old pedigree cow giving birth to a healthy set of triplets, bringing her total calves reared to 12. The pigmeat price is finally starting to rise slowly with 1-2p/kg being added in recent weeks, although with current cereal and soya prices the price a kilo will need to rise by 15-20p.
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