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The Dairy Edge 亚博体育提现未达流水Podcast Archive

Episode 61

Kevin Downing from ICBF joins us this week to with his top tips for sire selection for the upcoming breeding season.

He suggests key traits to consider are high EBI cows with early calving date.For sire selection whether using daughter proven or genomically selected sires,farmers should select high EBI bulls with high sub-indices for areas of importance for herd.

Higher EBI offspring will produce more profit with each €1 additional EBI = €2 additional profit.

Kevin explains the recommendation around the number of bulls has increased with a recommendation for up to 8 bulls for a 100-150 cow herd.  He considers the number of straws required to produce sufficient replacements,estimating on average 4 straws are used to produce 1 heifer.

Finally,Kevin recommends that we focus on the heifers in the herd as they are typically genetically elite compared with the cows in the herd.Focus should be on heifers calving down between 22-26 months as they will last longer in the herd and produce milk solids across their lifetime.

For more information:Sire Advice Help Document 1(PDF)


2018 Grass 10 champion John McNamara joins Emma-Louise Coffey to talk through his farming career and some of the people who have helped him along the way.

John explains that the farm has been in the McNamara family for three generations and he considers the changes that have taken place over the last 20 years since he returned home farming.

At that time the McNamaras were milking between 50-60 cows on a 25 ha platform.John and his wife Olive now milk 250 cows on a land base of 116 ha.John explains that expansion happened on the basis of the ability to grow grass as the main source of feed.

The McNamaras won Farmyard of the Year in 2009,40 years on from his father winning a similar competition that recognises farms general neatness and work organisation.John explains that his parents instilled a strong work ethic as well as pride of place in their farm as divers that saw them being recognised on both occasions.

John's community spirit is evident throughout his farming career being involved in Macra and with his local community,and in particular the GAA.   He highlights the importance of work,life balance having an outlet away from the farm.John believes dairy farming is a socially and financially rewarding career and offers a great way of life for farmers and their families.

Episode 63

In part 2 of our interview with John McNamara,we find out about the grassland management on John's dairy farm.

John explains that the grazing season starts in August of the previous year.He starts extending his grazing rotation and building farm cover in August,hitting peak farm cover in later September and closing the farm from at an appropriate cover to carry grass into the spring.

He explains that the farm is heavy meaning the shoulder periods of the grazing season can be a challenge.John accepts this challenge each year by employing all the grazing technologies such as on/off grazing and back fencing.

When considering KPIs for grazing,John thinks figures like 10 grazings per paddock are really important for him and believes if you can get off to a good start during the spring rotation,you are on the right track.

Turning our attention to the Grass 10 open day on his farm in Knockainey on April 24th,John welcomes all farmers and their families to the event.On the day,we can expect to get an insight to excellence in grassland on the McNamara family farm.