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Keeping Dairy Heifers Outside Through Winter

17 January 2014

UK - DairyCo hosts a farm walk focusing on Outwintering strategies for dairy heifer replacements with researchers, Professor Liam Sinclair and Norton Atkins on 21 January.

Outwintering dairy heifer replacement is one option to reduce capital costs associated with rearing heifer replacements. During the day advantages and disadvantages of outwintering systems will be explained, as well as how to achieve target growth rates on these systems.

Last year, as part of the DairyCo funded research programme, Prof Liam Sinclair and Mr Norton Atkins visited nine commercial farms throughout the outwintering period to assess the performance of animals on three different forage types: kale, fodder beet and deferred grazing.

They measured live weight gain, herbage utilisation and animal performance in the first 100 days of lactation. Mineral supplementation was also investigated with half the animals on each farm receiving a mineral bolus. At the farm walk, Prof Sinclair and Mr Atkins discus some of these results as well as:

  • How to provide a balanced diet to optimise daily live weight gain
  • Optimising mineral nutrition during outwintering
  • Calculating crop production and allocating strip grazing
  • Managing potential health risks
  • Minimising environmental risks and soil damage.
  • The meeting takes place at The Arundell Arms Hotel, Lifton prior to visiting a local herd of 400 crossbred cows in a spring block calving system with extensive experience in outwintering all age groups of animals on a variety of crops and deferred grazing.

There is no charge to attend this event and lunch will be provided. To book you place, please email or call 024 7647 8707.

This event contributes to your Dairy Pro CPD points.

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