August 2022 must be one of the driest and hottest months on record. The number of rainy days we’ve had here in north Monaghan could be counted on one hand.
The unbroken ban allowed many reseeding, lime application, drainage work, third-cut silage and much more to be carried out.
But autumn is upon us, with changing leaves, declining schools and of course the return of plowing in two weeks.
The cows will slow down and become lazier as they move to and from the field. I added some round bales of silage to her diet last weekend. They ran through grass too fast and I found it difficult to stretch the spin length.
AFC is 783 and Cover/LU is 230kgDM. Cows produce 1.8 kg/ms. SCC is 110000.
There was a case of mastitis in August and I did not treat it as she is not pregnant and will be culled. The affected quarter has become dry and the cow is healthy.
All cows and in fact all breeding animals were vaccinated against IBR last month. Cow tails were cut off.
I am very satisfied with the performance of my calves so far, as they only received one dose of worms and hardly or not at all coughed.
They are still in a group of 35 and receive 1-2kg of meals daily. I took the straw away from them because they didn’t care.
The third cut is done. It was rounded into round bales, yielding a respectable 100 bales. The quality should be good as it was mown very dry and had withered well for two days.
This should complete all silage making for this year and my forage budget tells me I’m on track for winter forage.
The two silo pits can now be tested at any time and show the quality of the winter ration. I will do a mineral test as it is just as important as the quality test. It’s an expensive test. It may be necessary to negotiate with the miller.
Residual manure – which is very small – and dairy wash is spread on the silage floor to empty all manure tanks.
This silage floor will be grazed by the calves and 50 recently purchased camp lambs.
Fertilizer will be spread across all paddocks next week as the deadline is September 14th.
At our last discussion group meeting, we talked about fertilizer purchases for next spring. There was general reluctance as we hope prices will not go up next spring.
But if there are offers from local dealers, they will be checked. Some retailers have stocks of proprietary urea available, however it is not recommended to purchase this as the ‘proprietary’ element of urea has a short shelf life.
At the beginning of August we went to Donegal for a few days break. The weather was fabulous and the whole county looked great from the beaches to the mountains. Ireland has so much to offer when the sun shines.
Back home, on August 20th, things went head-first into our local show, hit by one of the few wet days of the month. The rain didn’t spoil the day too much with a large number of people attending and enjoying it.
Across the country, it’s clear that the spirit of our traditional shows is alive and well. I cannot praise enough the volunteers of all ages who work so hard for the good of others.
Overall it has been a great summer for farming and the people of rural Ireland.
Gerard Sherlock farms in Tydavnet, County Monaghan
https://www.independent.ie/business/farming/dairy/dairy-advice/gerard-sherlock-why-i-didnt-treat-my-lone-case-of-mastitis-41963325.html Gerard Sherlock: Why I Didn’t Treat My Only Case of Mastitis