Get your grazing plan into action

Nationally, Irish beef grassland farms on average are growing between 5 and 6t of dry matter per hectare; however, on research farms and on Teagasc demonstration farms, between 10 and 12t/ha is regularly being achieved.

Earlier turnout on farms is a significant factor in achieving increased amounts of grazed grass in the diet and each extra tonne of grazed grass in the diet of beef animals is worth an estimated €105 on Irish farms.

Even increasing the amount of grazed grass in the diet by 1t/ha will increase profitability by around €4,000 on a 40ha farm.

Join Teagasc this evening, Thursday, February 11, at 8:00pm with Teagasc Beef Specialist Alan Dillon for its ‘Let’s Talk Cattle’ webinar, during which John Douglas from the Teagasc Grass10 team will outline the first steps you can take this year to get your grazing plan into action.

You can register for the series of ‘Let’s Talk Cattle’ webinars which take place once a month by visiting: www.teagasc.ie/letstalkcattle.

Tonight’s ‘Let’s Talk Cattle’ webinar at 8:00pm will address what practices you need to adopt to ensure earlier turnout is achieved and maximum use is made of what grass is available on your farm prior to closing up for silage along with advice on fertilisation rates and closing up for silage.

Fertiliser

Early nitrogen is needed to kickstart growth on grassland farms. However, this is just one piece of the puzzle and soil fertility and grass quality will all play a role on determining on whether a farm can achieve early turnout.

Teagasc specialists will outline the steps to take to improve overall soil fertility on the farm and discuss what are the best options for farms on a variety of soil types, grass swards and stocking rates when it comes to when you should spread fertiliser in the spring.

With new regulations coming from Europe over the next few years on limiting the amount of chemical fertiliser spread in Ireland, it is essential that farmers become familiar with what they need to do to abide by the rules while not reducing output on their farms.

Grazing plan

Often it is found that the reason for delayed turnout to grass on beef farms is a lack of a grazing plan. This means having your infrastructure ready on your farm in terms of roadways, fencing and paddocking.

Temporary divisions are often necessary for early spring grazing and a flexible attitude is needed for times when weather gets wet and stock end up being rehoused. Teagasc specialists will discuss what to do to plan out your farm for the months ahead and what to do if it all goes wrong weather wise.

Register now

This series of webinars for beef farmers will be hosted monthly by Teagasc and is a must for any beef farmer or anyone involved in the beef industry. Register now and be notified once a month of the upcoming webinar which will provide you with timely, relevant and practical advice to allow you make better management decisions on your beef farm.

And be prepared to get involved in the discussion – there will be an opportunity for you to pose your questions to each week’s presenters using the Q&A tab on the bottom of your screen.

Register today at: www.teagasc.ie/letstalkcattle.