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John Heslin on the technologies beef farmers should consider in advance of the calving and breeding season


With technologies increasing on farms every year, this week’s episode of the Beef Edge podcast speaks to John Heslin, MSD Market Access and Marketing Manager and part time beef farmer who gives his insights in advance of calving and breeding season.

John describes how he farms with his father in Co. Westmeath operating a suckling to store and sometime finishing system. With all family members involved it makes work-life balance easier as both John and his father work off-farm, plus John plays for both Westmeath and St Loman’s Mullingar GAA.

John describes how having a calving camera is such an asset with it allowing them to keep an eye on the cows from their phone even if John is away with work.

He highlights that to reduce labour due to sick calves, they will vaccinate cows pre calving. Obviously, sire selection is an important factor to minimise calving difficulty and the fact they use 100% AI, heat detection is an issue when it comes to AI.  John has installed ‘SenseHub’ which sends alerts to his phone if the animal is sick or in heat.

Since 1st January 2022, all new cattle tags that farmers are ordering are electronic identification EID tags and from July all calves born will have to have EID tags, but John has been using EID tags for the past 2 years and discusses a number of benefits from their use.

For more episodes and information go to the Beef Edge show page.

Produced on behalf of Teagasc by LastCastMedia.com