With turnout delayed on many beef farms around the country, this has meant that most are behind in terms of grazing targets. It’s important to start grazing as soon as possible for a number of reasons: it lowers costs, reduces shed pressure and – most importantly of all – it kickstarts swards into growing again. You should aim to split your farm into three: high covers (8cm+), medium covers (6-8cm) and low covers (<5cm). High covers should be grazed before receiving fertiliser or slurry, medium covers should receive fertiliser and low covers are ideal for slurry application. If the farm is way behind target, medium covers could be grazed first to speed up the first rotation and get these swards growing again. Silage ground should be grazed where possible to increase the quality and that means that many will opt to graze silage fields first at this stage in order to close up on the first week of April. Delaying closing of silage fields beyond 10 April can have a negative impact in yields.