Weekly Grass Management Diary of Robotic Grazing Farm – 21st June (week 26)
- Growth 35.5kg DM/ha (82.1)
- AFC 568kg DM/ha (667)
- Cover/cow 166kg DM (195)
- Demand/ha 58.2kg DM/ha
- MS/cow 2.02kg (2.09)
- Fat 3.94% (3.84)
- Protein 3.45% (3.48)
*previous weeks grass management figures in brackets
Last week, cows grazed out A1, A2, B1 and C8. The cows did a good job grazing out all paddocks to 50kg DM/ha, even the heavy cover on C8 as it wasn’t stemmy. SulphaCAN was spread last week at 33units/acre; all paddocks were spread except C9 which will get slurry. The cows are finishing of C9; the cover was heavy (2000kg DM/ha) so there is some residual of >100kg DM/ha on parts of the paddock so that will be topped. The cows will enter C1 Monday night at 22.00 at a cover of 1350kg DM/ha and graze C11 towards the end of the week.
B5 is currently being grazed well (1400kg DM/ha) and will enter B6 by the end of the week. The times for B and C paddocks have been changed back to the normal as the covers evened on both sides. The A paddocks are growing at 21kg DM/ha so we will reduce the times cows are entering A.
Growth has dropped dramatically with further drop expected this week; Growth rates of 21kg DM/ha in A, 50kg DM/ha in B and 30kg DM/ha in C. We will increase our rotation length further to 26 days as we expect a growth of 15-25kg DM/ha this week; rain is not forecast this week. The grass is starting to burn up in parts, especially in A. We will continue to graze paddocks as we need the heavy cover in B and C to be grazed out well. In the event of no rain, we will have to introduce baled silage by Friday to further slow down our rotation. We need to keep cover/cow as high as possible to keep a portion of grass in the cow’s diet. Grass is coming under stress due to soil moisture deficit and heading out so milk protein is expected to drop.
Jordan Molloy – Grazing Consultant, Grasstec
“I teach farmers how to measure grass and the discipline needed to do weekly farm walks. I show them how to input their data onto Agrinet and how to understand the grass wedge. Each week presents a different scenario on the farm so it’s crucial that the farmer can interpret the data in order to make informed decisions. Grasstec consultants are available in Ireland and the UK.”