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Derrypatrick Farm Notes Week of September 24th

General Details

  • Steers and heifers were separated into two groups in preparation for housing
  • Steers and heifers were treated for lungworms on Tuesday September 25th


  • A pregnancy scan took place on Thursday September 20th
  • 122 animals were scanned, 110 were scanned in-calf
    • 90% in-calf rate
  • Included in the 122 were 29 replacement heifers
    • 26 of these 29 were scanned in-calf
      • 90% in-calf rate
  • Empty cows will be culled post-weaning period

 Animal performance

  • Steers and heifers were weighed on Tuesday September 25th (Table 1)
  • Calves are currently being offered 1 kg per head concentrates through creep feeders
  • Forward grazing of the calves is now occurring in preparation for weaning
    • This is being done by raising an electric fence wire (Picture 1)
    • Calves get priority access to the best quality grass which helps maintain their performance
    • Calves get used to grazing away from cows to reduce the maternal bond between cow and calf, leading to reduced stress at weaning time
  • Steers/heifers are currently receiving 2 kg per head per day concentrates

Table 1: Steer and heifer weights recorded on September 25th





Average weight (kg)




ADG since turnout (kg/day)







  • Farm was walked on Monday and average farm cover was approximately 875 kg DM/ha
  • The farm currently has 15 days grass available
  • Second-cut silage was cut on Monday September 24th and picked up on Wednesday September 26th
    • This area received 2000 gallons/acre of slurry using a trailing shoe (Picture 3)
  • One bag of CAN/acre (27.5 units of N fertiliser) is being spread following each grazing
    • This will continue until the extended deadline of September 30th
  • Optimum post-grazing sward heights are being achieved (Picture 4)


Grassland management

The details below are for the full Derrypatrick farm:

Cover taken 24/09/2018


Average farm cover (kg DM/ha)


Growth (kg DM/ha/day)


Demand (kg DM/ha/day)


Days ahead


Autumn rotation planner

  • Paddocks that will be grazed first next year will be closed next week 
  • The drier and more sheltered paddocks will be targeted first for closing as they will be the first grazed next spring 
  • The 60:40 autumn rotation planner will be implemented on the farm 



Weekly planner

  • Do weekly grass covers and monitor re-growths closely
  • Prepare housing facilities for steers who will be housed over the next few weeks
  • Weigh cows and calves next week