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Teagasc Appoint Cattle Specialist

Teagasc has added to its team of beef specialists. Vivian Silke has been appointed as a Cattle Knowledge Transfer Specialist covering the West and Midlands region. He joins the team of Teagasc Cattle Specialists led by Pearse Kelly, which includes Aidan Murray, Karen Dukelow and Alan Dillon.

Based at the Teagasc Mellows Campus Athenry, Vivian Silke will be working with the Teagasc Business and Technology drystock advisors, cattle farmers and the wider beef industry to increase the adoption of technology at farm level to improve the physical and financial performance on farms. He will work with Teagasc research teams in identifying and implementing relevant cattle research and work with advisors to develop and expand the beef advisory programme in conjunction with the Drystock specialist team. Vivian will continue to co-ordinate the Beef Data Genomics Programme (BDGP) phase II training courses taking place currently. Other priorities will include providing support for the joint Teagasc/Industry programmes and contributing to the development of new industry initiatives.

From a farming background in county Galway, Vivian Silke has been working with Teagasc as the Co-ordinator of the BDGP training courses since February 2016. He joined Teagasc in 2000, initially based in Athenry. His early career was as a Discussion Group Facilitator on a Joint Programme between Teagasc, Galway Livestock Marts and the IFA. He qualified with a B.Agr.Sc from UCD and then completed a Masters of Agricultural Science, plus a Diploma in Financial Management from WIT.

Speaking following his appointment Vivian Silke said: “It’s a challenging time at the moment for all cattle producers, facing pressures from the market place and high costs due to inclement weather. However the 2016 e-Profit monitor analysis shows that achieving higher levels of technical performance coupled with high stocking rates is the best way for individual drystock farmers to protect their incomes.”