Know How / Beef / Health and welfare

Read up-to-date information on major welfare issues and diseases affecting dairy animals including infectious disease such as TB and BVD, respiratory disease, lameness and keep up to date with the latest welfare requirements.

Case studies

LIVESTOCK

Durham farm saves costs with grassland focus and weighing

Measuring and recording grass growth and weighing livestock more frequently has opened up cost-saving opportunities on an upland grazing farm. David and Joyce Monkhouse of Low Houselop Farm, Tow Law,…

BEEF

How a beef farmer cut antibiotics use in suckler herd by 74%

Suckler-finisher Sebastian Richardson and his family have cut antibiotics use by 74% since 2015. In a pioneering approach to his herd management, Mr Richardson of Townsend Farm, Oundle, has been…

GRASSLAND MANAGEMENT

How a beef herd delivers £350/cow with deferred mob grazing

A deferred mob grazing system and maternal native cows have helped slash costs and left a cash-only net profit of £350 a cow on one Worcestershire organic farm. Rob Havard…

BOVINE TB

Video: Farmers living on the frontline of bovine TB

For farmers living in a high-risk area, bovine TB has a huge financial and emotional impact. We visit two farms in south-west Wales which have endured long-term breakdowns. Stephen and…

HEALTH AND WELFARE

How livestock producers cope with predators

Introducing large carnivores into the British countryside is a notion that has left many livestock farmers concerned about increased sheep mortality and unwanted extra costs. Through reintroducing species such as…

BEEF

Couple makes success of farming on remote Orkney island

Healthy and efficient animals are a must for Neil and Jocelyn Rendall, who farm one of the most remote and smallest Orkney islands. The Isle of Papa Westray (“Papay”), one…

Practical advice

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LIVESTOCK DISEASES

Q&A: Mycoplasma bovis disease in cattle

Mycoplasma bovis (or M bovis) is a bacterial disease found in dairy and beef cattle. It can lead to serious illness in cattle affecting health and production. Farmers whose herds…

BOVINE TB

5 ways to improve TB control in the UK

Bovine TB has exploded in the UK, spreading rapidly, ravaging counties and wiping out whole herds in its path. Until now, much of the focus of disease control has been…

HEALTH AND WELFARE

Strategies to prevent heat stress in cattle

Record high temperatures last summer caught out livestock farmers in both indoor and outdoor systems, with cattle succumbing to debilitating heat stress. Tell-tail signs of heat stress are lethargy and…

HEALTH AND WELFARE

Fly control in cattle: the options compared

As many dairy and beef systems have intensified, so too has the need for effective fly control programmes that combine cleanliness with chemical, biological or physical controls – or all…

PARASITIC DISEASES

Do’s and don’ts of vaccinating cattle against lungworm

In the past two decades, lungworm cases have increased tenfold, according to a report published by researchers at the University of Liverpool. A change in climate allowing for extended grazing…

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)…

Insights

FEED AND NUTRITION

Trial shows high iodine cow diet can hinder colostrum uptake

A survey of iodine supplementation in beef herds has revealed that over supplementation pre-calving can negatively affect calves’ ability to absorb colostrum. A collaborative research project between Moredun Research Institute,…

BOVINE TB

Current UK TB rules - and what's coming next

Defra and its devolved counterparts announced a series of tougher bovine TB rules in the past months in a bid to control the disease, which continues to see tens of…

LIVESTOCK DISEASES

Why dairy farmers should tackle Johne's now

In less than two weeks (by 31 October) farmers supplying purchasing members of the National Johne’s Management Plan (NJMP) – which represents 82% of the UK supply – will need…

LIVESTOCK DISEASES

Farm trial aims to solve risk of fluke-infected snails

A technique which identifies the presence of mud snails infected with fluke is being used to help Welsh farms determine fields posing the greatest risk to animals. The presence of…

LIVESTOCK

Why textbook heifer growth rates may not be good enough

Dairying experts at home and abroad are questioning whether units are achieving heifer growth targets of 0.7-0.8kg/day and if this gain is sufficient for the modern Holstein. Concerted efforts to…

LIVESTOCK

BVD forum: Joint approach needed to tackle disease

Bovine viral diarrhoea (BVD) is widespread in beef and dairy herds and represents a significant drain on the UK cattle industry, with Reading University putting the total cost at £61m/year.…

Q&A: How EU drug rules could affect beef and dairy farmers

Draft EU legislation looks likely to make reporting of on-farm antibiotic use mandatory. What does this mean for cattle farmers and how would it work? Brian Lindsay from the Cattle…

Bovine TB: How Ireland compares with the UK

Ireland is often held up as an example of a country that has shown that culling badgers is a vital element of any strategy to eradicate bovine TB. Ministers refer…

LIVESTOCK

Pneumonia in calves: Pin down the cause and prevent it

Bacteria that cause pneumonia are fairly widespread and can live in a calf’s respiratory tract without causing disease. In the final part of this series, Caroline Stocks looks at what…

LIVESTOCK

Pneumonia in calves: How farmers can cut the risk

The aim of Farmers Weekly’s new series is to help farmers reduce the costs of pneumonia
in calves. Caroline Stocks sets the scene with 
a look at the results of an…

Eblex assurance scheme could clear up halal confusion

The constant drive to expand the potential market for British beef and lamb could soon result in a new halal assurance scheme being launched by Eblex. It could be a…