‘Increased demand’ for feed blocks to prevent summer mastitis

While the incidence of summer mastitis tends to vary from year to year, the need is always there to take proper preventative measures against the fly-borne disease.

Crystalyx Garlyx claims that its feed block products not only help as a preventative measure to protect against mastitis, but that they also act as “valuable feed sources”, allowing stock to “maximise the nutritional value of the grass they are grazing”.

The company cites the example of John Dwyer – a farmer in Co. Tipperary milking 160 spring-calving cows. He is apparently in the process of expanding his herd. He says that keeping all of his replacement heifers “as healthy as possible” is critically important.

He explained how using Crystalyx Garlyx feed blocks is an approach that has worked for him, saying:

I now put feed blocks out with these animals as a matter of course; it’s an approach that has worked for me. Summer mastitis has not been an issue since I started using feed blocks.

According to Joe Hayes, manager of Cleanline Farm Services in Tipperary town, “preventing summer mastitis can be a real challenge for farmers throughout the summer months”. He claims that he has seen feed blocks work successfully in keeping the flies off animals.

Eamon Morrissey – a farmer based near Fethard, Co. Tipperary – milks 200 spring-calving cows. His plan is to apparently increase the size of the herd to 300 cows over the next couple of years.

He said that summer mastitis had been an issue on the farm in the past, but that it changed when he started “using feed blocks out with the grazing heifers”.

Ray Connolly, from Star Fuels and Farm Supplies based in Clonmel in Co. Tipperary, is Morrissey’s local supplier. He said: “Large numbers of dairy farmers now recognise the benefits of using feed blocks when it comes to preventing summer mastitis. Demand has increased accordingly.”