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Robbie Newlands: 'The autumn list of jobs will keep us busy'

livestockHarvest

Harvest is over and the autumn list of livestock jobs will keep us busy for the next month at least. The weather has been kind and allowed us to harvest and get straw baled in good order.

 

Quite a lot of our straw is fed to dry cows, so it is great to get the straw baled and inside dry. The grain is almost all for our own use and was also dryer than we have had for a few years, which saved us using quite as much Propcorn on it as normal.

 

During the first few days of October our vet Mark Pearson scanned our cows to see how successful the bulls had been over summer.

 

The results were mixed, two batches of cows were all in-calf, the other two batches were not so good, the effects of a bull which went lame and another which needed a hoof crack dealt with mid-bulling, caused more of our cows than usual to scan to calve later and a couple of extra empty ones as well.

 

The upside is there were a number of cows scanned carrying twins, this information will give us the chance to draw them out, once they are weaned, for a bit of extra feed.

 

All the empty cows are now weaned, inside and on to an increasing amount of barley to try and get them away before the sheds are needed for the calves in November.

 

While the cows were in for scanning we sorted them into lots to separate bull and heifer calves, the calves also got a pour on wormer and their first dose of pneumonia vaccine.

 

Sheep are next on the agenda and the ewes and gimmers will be crotched wormed and given a mineral bolus mid-October. This will be the first time we have used a bolus on the ewes, but after seeing the difference the cobalt bolus has made to our lambs, I think it will be worth trying on the ewes too.

 

Between harvest and getting into cattle and sheep job, Kirsty and I went to look for another car, although our last one was not that old the mileage was creeping up. Kirsty does not like the engine to get cold for too long.

 

The trouble is we need the kids to set up the new one because there are a lot of buttons. Suddenly I feel old.

Farmers Guardian
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