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Proinnsias Creedon July/August Update

Important to take FEC samples this month

Important to take FEC samples this month

  • Dose calves for lungworm if they are coughing
  • Take FEC samples to test for lungworm, stomach worms and coccidia
  • Use snap tests to test scour from calves for rotavirus, coronavirus, e.coli or salmonella
Mid year review of finances

Mid year review of finances

  • Review sales and expenses for the year to date
  • Estimate what other expenses will be incurred between now and December
  • Consider what system changes might help your farm to be more profitable and help with cash flow
Weight gain at grass

Weight gain at grass

  • DairyX calves should be 100kg at 12 weeks of age
  • Weigh grazing cattle to estimate weight gain at grass (Target 1kg/day)
  • Draft cattle for finishing as they become fit (target fat score 3+)

Animal Health

The calves have improved since the last visit. They were treated with a pour on dose on 6th July to treat them for stomach worms and lung worms as they were scouring and some were coughing. They were also given a coccidiosis preventative on the same day to prevent coccidiosis. There are a few smaller calves that have loose dung. A snap test was used to sample the dung to see if it was being caused by rotavirus, coronavirus, e.coli or salmonella but it turned out negative for all agents. A FEC sample will be taken which will test it for lung worms, stomach worms and coccidian to identify if they are causing an issue. The 2021 calves that were dosed with a pour on over winter showed positive results for stomach worms and fluke after being dosed with a pour on over winter and they had to be re-dosed with an oral drench which appeared to work afterwards.


The cost control planner for the farm was updated from January to May/June 2022. To date this is showing a significant reduction in cattle sales versus 2021, although cattle purchases are significantly back on last year too due to high live prices. Relating to this, the cattle marketing and levy costs are significantly lower than last year.

Fertiliser costs are less than 50% of last year’s bill up until July. It is expected that Proinnsias will not have any significant expenditure on fertiliser in the coming month and hopes that this will not rise any further. This is due to soil sample results which showed index 3 and 4 for P and K across a lot of the farm which reduced the need to chemical compounds. Slurry has been spread strategically on the farm and applied to the fields that need it most – with 1-2 cuts of silage and that have lower indexes. The lower stock numbers has also played a role here. It is a little early to predict where ration costs will end up at for 2022 until silage samples are taken and stock numbers are determined for the winter.

On the fixed costs, repairs and maintenance expenses are over 200% higher on the farm this year than in 2021, mainly due to practical and time saving changes made to the calf housing. Machinery running costs are looking similar to last year.

January, March and April show the biggest cash flow deficit on the farm so far this year, and from looking at the slaughter report there is good potential to reduce the age at slaughter on the farm. This would pull back cattle finished in May/June to March/April/May. As well as helping to reduce total emissions on the farm by reducing methane emissions, feed required and slurry produced, this would help cash flow and ensure cattle are finished at their optimum time and age.


The 2022 born calves (36) were weighed on 14th June and averaged 100kg, having gained 0.47kg/day since birth. Their average birth date was 17th February and their target weight for 12 weeks (~12th May) was 100kg. They had health challenges from respiratory disease and scour which has contributed to them being approximately one month behind target.

The 2021 born heifers (30) were weighed on 16th July and averaged 334kg, having gained 0.42kg/day since the end of May. They haven’t been dosed to date but a FEC sample will be taken.

Ten more heifers were bought in June (average €2.22/kg) and they were weighed along with the previous purchases on 16th July. They averaged 374kg, and the 6 cattle that were bought in April gained 0.76kg/day since May.

Some of the 2020 born heifers (14) were weighed on 19th July and averaged 527kg, having gained 0.75kg/day at grass since May. A further bunch of 19 heifers averaged 452kg after gaining 0.92kg/day off grass. 16 if these heifers have been selected for feeding at grass.

Five heifers were killed on 9th June. There were 27 months of age on average and had a carcass weight of 288kg, with an average grade of O=3+

One heifer was slaughtered on 22nd July at 28 months of age. She was 271kg carcass weight and graded O=3=.

Seven heifers were slaughtered on 4th July at 27 months of age. They made an average carcass weight of 286kg and graded O+3+ on average.