The day-to-day management practices on Newford Farm at present are focused on keeping good-quality grass ahead of stock to maximise animal performance.

There is no pressure on grass supplies since first-cut silage ground came back into the rotation and with grass growth rates well ahead of demand.

The farm only closed 12 acres as a definite second cut on Tuohy’s outfarm block, with this carried out to have a supply of silage present on that holding for feeding to weanlings over the winter.

This will be cut next week, weather-dependent, and it is also likely that there will be a couple of other paddocks mowed at the same time to maintain quality.

Second cut approach

The approach taken for the second cut on the remainder of the farm is to take surplus grass out of the rotation when needed.

Coen’s land block was entirely closed for first-cut silage and 2020-born bullocks were recently moved out there and will remain until housing.

There was 25 acres mowed last week as surplus grass, with this area yielding 93 top-quality bales.

There is also a few paddocks on the Newford block which have got ahead of cows and calves.

This area received a top-up of 20 units of nitrogen and Matthew Murphy says the plan will be to cut this area in the next couple of weeks.

Nitrogen application

Nitrogen continues to be applied after grazing at a rate of about 20 units per acres.

The ground where bales was cut on Coen’s block received 26 units of protected urea.

This ground would ideally be receiving phosphorus and potassium, but this is not possible, as there in no allowance to do so with the farm operating under nitrates derogation rules.

This ground received 2,000 gallons of slurry per acre following first-cut silage and any ground where bales have been made will be recorded and earmarked for receiving slurry next spring to replenish the offtake of nutrients.

All 2021 male progeny were also castrated on Wednesday. This practice is carried out on an annual basis before progeny reach six months of age.