Newford Farm baled its first cut of silage on Thursday. The farm changed from the normal practice of pit silage to baled silage this year due to uncertainty around the availability of the Newford land block.

This follows an announcement in early May that IDA Ireland was taking control of the lands to facilitate the development of a €300m development by US company Dexcom.

The silage yielded in the region of 10 bales per acre. This was possibly slightly lower than originally anticipated, but the aim was to aim for quality over quantity.

The higher dry matter of bales compared with pit silage will also increase the volume of silage dry matter relative to pit silage.

Excellent condition

Farm manager Stephen Frend says the crop was picked in excellent condition, with grass mowed before heading out.

Silage ground was grazed late in the season before closing and it is predicted that silage will test in the low- to mid-70s for dry matter digestibility.

Breeding update

The herd has come to the end of the fifth week of breeding. Repeat breeding activity is broadly in line with recent years, with about 20 of the 85 cows repeating.

The cows continue to be monitored closely, with once-a-day AI being implemented.

Stephen comments that stock are very content at present, with grass utilisation excellent and compensating for a slight reduction in grass growth rates.

The breeding programme and sires selected can be viewed here.

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