Weekly Notes - 12th August 2021

It has been nice to have a wee reprieve from the rain over the last couple of days however it hasn't made much difference to the ground conditions. Like many across the region, the farm team are doing everything they can to manage the wet conditions but things don't always go to plan. Today we milked 31 new mums - our biggest calving day so far this season.

Key Decisions

1. With reduced pasture utilisation in the wet conditions baleage is being offered to the milkers to keep intake up without having to increase the area offered per day

2. The milker mob will be split into kale and fodder beet mobs tomorrow as we have already surpassed 100 cows going into the vat. At the current rate of calving it won't be long before we have milking mobs for each farmlet!

3. Colostrum cows will continue to be run as a single mob and rotated around the farmlets

4. To minimise damage in pasture paddocks they are being split in half lengthwise and the cows strip grazing up one half at a time.

5. During the farm walk this week the team noted the soil conditions in each paddock i.e. very soft, soft, OK, firm, surface water. This information will be used to allocate paddocks to the different herds so we won't necessarily be going into the next longest paddocks.

6. Milkers are still being milked OAD to help manage the workload as we are one staff member down due to ill health.

7. Springers are being offered fresh area twice per day and calves are collected at 9 am, 4 pm and 11 pm.

8. At the springer draft next Tuesday we will consolidate all remaining cows on crop into x1 kale and x1 fodder beet mob. We have a surplus of fodder beet so cows will stay on the crop as long as is feasible. We have approximately 1-1.5 ha of kale remaining.

9. Remedial action will be required for areas in a few pasture paddocks grazed in really wet conditions when things dry out a bit

10. Kale R2's will head off to the grazier early next week but fodder beet R2's will remain on crop until at least the end of August.

General Notes

1. APC and area grazed are on track with the SRP and feed budget however this may change if conditions stay wet and the additional area is required

2. R2's were weighed this week and have been gaining at 0.7 kg liveweight/day over the last month

3. Given the weather conditions animal health has not been too bad. We are getting a few down cows but these are responding well to treatment

4. This week we had a session on the SDH communication plan with the aim of using more communication channels to increase awareness of SDH and all the great research and demonstration that is happening on the farm

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