Teagasc announces Sheep Open Day at Athenry

A technical day for sheep farmers will take place in Teagasc Athenry on Wednesday, June 21. The event will provide an opportunity for sheep farmers to review the latest research and technical advice from Teagasc.

Aspects of sheep production will be covered on the day.

Teagasc Sheep Enterprise Leader, Michael Diskin, said: “There will be a major emphasis on grass-based systems of lamb production and breeding incorporating the indices, economic evaluations and genomic selection. Attention will also be paid to low and high index rams, flock health and hill sheep production.”

For hill farmers, there will be a focus on the options for increasing output. Presentations will be given on the factors affecting ewe productivity, the opportunities – through crossbreeding – to produce prolific replacements, and budgets for finishing store lambs.

The results emerging from the research trial comparing the performance of Irish and New Zealand genetically elite ewes (INZAC flock) will also be available for farmers to discuss and question.

Three farmers taking part in the Teagasc BETTER Farm Sheep Programme will be in attendance to tell their stories. The organisation has worked with both lowland and hill sheep farmers to improve technical and financial performance of their enterprises.

A number of workshops will take place on the day covering: grazing management; grass measurement; Pasture Base Ireland; and fencing.

Topics including parasitology, lamb mortality and mineral nutrition will be discussed in the animal health village.

There will also be a health and safety section, providing advice to farmers on how to keep themselves and their families safe while on the farm.

Speaking about the event, Michael Gottstein, Head of Sheep Knowledge Transfer in Teagasc, encouraged sheep farmers to continuously strive for technical improvements on their farms, particularly in light of Brexit.

The open day at Teagasc Athenry will begin at 11.00am and run until 5.00pm. The last groups led by Teagasc advisors will commence the circuit at 2.00pm.