Monitor Farm Open Day Results
Posted: Feb 01, 2011
I have been able to report some excellent results to the recent Monitor Farm open day.
Although at times even our best laid plans went astray, it was all about us knowing when and what to change to get things back on track that brought some real results this past year thanks to the support of the team at Grasslands and the advisors to the Monitor Farm.
In the last 12 months the farm has grown more grass, made more silage (41ha more), fed less corn (down from 900kg/cow to 800kg/cow) yet produced more milk (up from 4,600 l/cow to 5,100 l/cow) and increased profits (7.1ppl to 10.5ppl). I put this purely down being able to make better informed decisions through the recording, monitoring and review process that is in place.
With 20 months of data now collected in the daily diary that Kay Carson developed for us, we are really starting to see the benefits to our management of the unit, and the rewards on the bottom line.
We are also now in a position to share our objectives for the year ahead. Again there are some challenges targets, but we are confident we can work together to achieve these:
- Reduce number of late calvers / tighten spring calving to 11 weeks
- Continue to improve yield
- Reduce lameness – currently mobility scoring 92% as 0 and 1s, 3% score 2s and 5% score 3. Need to reduce score 3s to 0% by improving tracks and surfaces.
- Continue to improve fertility
- Try to reduce corn use
- Grow 14 tonnes DM/ha of grass
- Re-seed 10% of the farm each spring / Improve soil nutrients and compaction with sub-soiling as part of the reseeding programme