First cut silage yielded well on land that had not been grazed through March and early April. It is now enjoying the welcome rain and is bulking up well for second cut.
The land that was grazed was very slow to recover through the coldest April and May that I can remember, hopefully we will get some sunshine and warm weather.
Once again the Royal Highland Show proved to be a great shop window for Scottish agriculture; unfortunately, most of the four days were very wet. Our team of Simmentals had a successful show, winning a first, six seconds, reserve male, reserve female and reserve overall Simmental Champion.
We managed to get the ewes inside dry and clipped a few days before we left for the Highland, but the cold winds have taken their toll on some of the ewes’ udders, so it looks as though more replacement gimmers will be needed this autumn.
The lambs have all had their first dose of wormer, trace elements and preventative for fly strike, with all the ewes also being done with preventative. Home-bred ewe hoggs have been moved from the upland unit back home to keep a check on the ragwort and docks.
Having them on the grazing grass at home has worked extremely well the past few years and has done away with the need to spray for ragwort; it was unbelievable to see them coming out of the float and going around the edges of the field nibbling the large dock leaves – maybe father’s saying of “they are the next thing to a goat” is true.
Iain Green farms 1,110ha as a family partnership. Stock includes 130 pedigree Simmentals, 330 Simmental-crosses, plus followers, 500 Highland Mule ewes and 340 sows. The partnership also runs a large haulage business.
Read more from our other livestock farmer focus writers