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Michael McGuigan September/October 2023



  • Staying on track despite the poor weather
  • Getting good graze outs
  • Grass Growth rates remain strong
  • Closing up in rotation and growing Spring grass now
  • Forage Rape growing very well and will be ready on November 1st for grazing


  • The weanlings are weighed again on September 4th
  • 7 Cull cows and 6 heifers will be sold by mid-October
  • Forward grazing and meal feeding in preparation for sale


Despite the wet weather during September and early October ground conditions have held firm and Michael has managed to keep stock out full-time.  Grass growth has remained strong with daily growth staying ahead of demand. A growth rate of 53kgs/DM/ha was recorded on the 9th of October and with demand of 37kgs/DM/ha there is 28 days of grass ahead. The farm cover is at 1029kgs in early October.

Michael is getting the paddocks grazed out through a leader follower system with the dry cows getting a good clean out. However, the challenge is to get enough ground grazed off quickly in order to start closing up the farm to grow nest years spring grass. With Michael , intending to sell dry cows and forward heifers , the demand will reduce further.


Picture 1: Michael is getting good graze outs

Michael is using the Autumn rotation planner to help him close the farm up to ensure that he has grass in February. The planner tells him that he needs to graze 0.63ha/day, starting on the 9th of October ie 4.40ha in total in the first week. This area will then be rested and not grazed again until 2024. The target is that by first week of November approximately 70 % of the farm will be closed with the final 30% grazed and closed by 26th of November.

Picture 2: The Autumn rotation planner 


Pict Picture 3: 9th October, 2023 cull cows will be sold in mid October 

Michael is very happy with the Forage rape. 5 acres was sown and this will feed 30 yearlings for 4 months. Dry baled silage will be fed with the crop and the yearlings will have access to a dry lie-back area.

Picture 4: Forage rape will be ready for stock on November 1st


The current crop of male weanlings were weighed on 4th of September and they are averaging 355kgs . This gives an ADG of 1.02 since birth . Michael took them off meal after weaning but with grass been very wet currently, he will start giving them 1.5kgs/head/day. They will be moved onto the rape on Nov 1. They males were castrated during the summer.

Report 1: Males weights 

Michael also weighed the heifers. They averaged 332kgs on September 4.  This gives an ADG of 1.02kgs. Michael will continue to keep them out on grass until the end of October before moving them onto the Rape also.

Report 2: Heifer weights

Michael Has culled 7 cows for various reasons and along with 6 forward heifers they are grazing ahead of the cows and also getting 1-1.5kgs of meal/head/day. He hope to off-load this group by mid October.

Picture 5: October 9th , forward heifers on 1.5kgs/meal/day

Picture 6: October 9th, grazing leafy swards in preparation for sale