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The technical performance of the dairy herd at Kildalton

Dairy teachers at Kildalton College, Zerlina Pratt and Aidan Nugent, join Emma-Louise Coffey on this week’s Dairy Edge podcast to discuss the technical performance of the dairy herd at Kildalton.

Zerlina gives an overview of the dairy unit which includes 110 cows on a 46 ha milking platform. The herd EBI is €175, ranking it in the top 3% of dairy herds in the country with cows having a Holstein-Friesian base with 50% of the herd crossed with either Norwegian Red or Jersey genetics.

Both Zerlina and Aidan recall technical performance including 300 days at grass, 13 tonne grass grown and 650 kg meal fed per cow from a feed perspective as well as the herd achieving an 89% 6 week calving rate and an average 530 kg MS produced per cow.

The dairy unit at Kildalton, as well as being a highly technically efficient farm, engages with a large number of students on a weekly basis. Aidan details the substantial number of practical dairy skills delivered to students at the college, including animal husbandry, milk machine running and maintenance, tractor and grassland skills.

Zerlina explains that Kildalton, like all of the Agricultural Colleges have continued to deliver skills during Covid-19 to maximise the learning opportunity to the students in line with government guidelines.            

For more information: https://www.teagasc.ie/education/teagasc-colleges/kildalton/

For more episodes from the Dairy Edge podcast visit the show page at: www.teagasc.ie/thedairyedge