Rethinking Cattle Performance workshop agenda

10.00 Arrival & breakfast

10.30 Introduction of the farm

11.00 Station 1 – Starter/early life of the calf

1. Colostrum management

  • Advice on how to test colostrum
  • The importance of the 5 Q’s (board to display the basic prinicples and key take home messages)
  • The role in plays in early development and how it affects the calf’s immunity and growth

2. Feeding milk in the first two weeks of life

  • Advice for transitioning onto powder and what powder to choose
  • How much should be fed and how often?
  • A demonstration of weighing and mixing the powder

3. Vaccination

  • When it should be carried out
  • A brief demonstration on how to do it on a live calf
  • Signs to look for that tell you that you have pneumonia and how to treat it
  • Board displaying the financial impacts of respiratory disease

11.45 Station 2 – Managing the calf: disease and feeding before weaning

1. Feeding the calf prior to weaning

  • How much milk should be fed prior to weaning?
  • Monitoring intakes: what is the calf telling you?
  • 2. Disease and vaccination

    • The most common disease affecting can be coccidiosis and scours
    • Here we will look at how to prevent and treat it and signs to look out for
    • Step one will be: can you spot the difference between the two?
    • Attendees to vote on keypads to see if they can accurately spot clinical signs and correctly diagnose them
    • Clarification of what each one is using pictures of symptoms
    • Advice on treatment and prevention (i.e. good hygiene)
    • Best practice advice for vaccination and key diseases to consider vaccinating against
    • Demonstration: carry out a demonstration on a life-sized calf.

12.30 Station 3: Weaning and data use

New research on weaning over three weeks:

  • How to make weaning as stress free as possible
  • Stepping down milk powder

Reviewing data up to weaning

  • There’s a wealth of data you can collect but what is most cost-effective
  • Targets for weight gain up to weaning
  • Importance of weighing: how often you should do it, what it can tell you and a demonstration using a weigh band
  • How weight gain and any other data should inform your management decisions going forward

13.15 Lunch

14.15 Farmer and farm vet discussions: genomics

  • How the farmer is using genomics
  • What benefits he’s seeing
  • Return on investment
  • Is it for you? Which herds it is best used in

15.00 Closing remarks and departure

Workshop Speakers

Tim O’Sullivan MVB
MRCVS Shropshire Farm Vets

Tim qualified as a vet from Dublin in 1994 and has been a full time farm vet since 1997. together with Alistair Macpherson, he established Macpherson O’Sullivan Farm Vets in 2003 to help better serve Shropshire farmers, with a specialist farm veterinary service. This progressed into Shropshire Farm Vets.

As a practice, Shropshire Farm Vets has always tried to educate and inform clients as much as possible and Tim is one of several Lantra-accredited trainers in the practice. He organises and runs DIY artificial insemination training, calf health training and dairy cow nutrition training days on a regular basis.

Tim O’Sullivan MVB
MRCVS Shropshire Farm Vets

Carolyn Hogan

Carolyn qualified from the RVC in 1995, and following time in mixed veterinary practice in Gloucestershire joined Zoetis (previously known as Pfizer Animal Health) in 2000 as a field based veterinary adviser.

In 2003, Carolyn became the National Veterinary Manager focusing on young stock health, respiratory and infectious disease, and emerging diseases within the cattle sector. During this time she has sat on various committees including the British Cattle Veterinary Association Council, the NBA health committee, and the DEFRA farm health planning sub-committee (beef), and continues to be actively involved in various industry bodies.

Carolyn Hogan

Hefin Richards
Profeed Nutrition Consultancy

Coming from a livestock farming background and following studies at Harper Adams University where Hefin Richards completed a B.Sc. (Hons) degree in Agriculture specialising in ruminant livestock production, he decided to pursue a career in livestock nutrition. Initially working in the compound feed industry as a cattle specialist, and then supporting mixer wagon users in both the UK, Ireland, with secondments to New Zealand, Chile, and France.

The decision was made in 1997 to form Profeed Nutrition Consultancy as a truly independent, farm focussed advisory business. Rumenation now works with progressive dairy units totalling over 14,000 cows, as well as a number of medium and large scale beef units. In addition to the core farm consultancy, Rumenation also delivers project and training work for commercial companies in the feed & forage equipment machinery, pharmaceutical, feed, forage and veterinary sectors, as well as industry bodies.

Hefin Richards
Profeed Nutrition Consultancy

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