Grass growth is surging ahead of livestock demand and grazing swards are starting to get ahead of cattle.

In order to keep grass under some level of control, shorten the grazing rotation for the next two to three weeks as grass hits peak growth.

By shortening the rotation to between 12 and 16 days, cattle reenter paddocks at a much more desirable sward height, improving utilisation and clean-out.

As grass growth hits peak levels in late May, there is likely to be adequate regrowth to sustain animals on a temporarily reduced rotation.

Sticking to a longer rotation around 21 days will see grass covers continue to grow in the paddocks ahead of cattle.

By the time cattle finally enter these paddocks, there will be waist-high swards of stem, rather than leaf.

Skip paddocks

Shortening the rotation means paddocks with strong covers can be skipped and taken out for silage. The key to this step is removing surplus grass early.

Any delay in cutting surplus grass holds up a paddock from coming back into the grazing rotation, putting the system under pressure.

Walking the grazing platform twice weekly will give greater confidence to take out surplus covers and a good idea of when to start extending the rotation again.

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