I farm: “Dairy beef cattle and sheep on 150ac on the outskirts of Kilkeel. All land is in grass except for 12ac used for winter barley. The straw and grain are used on farm.”

Family: “I am married to Brenda and we have three children, Scott, Ross and Lois. Scott is farming full-time with myself, but everyone helps out.”

Dairy beef: “I buy 80 to 90 heifer calves every October and November, usually Belgian Blue animals with a few Angus or Herefords. Heifers are reared to beef with most animals killed off grass from 22 to 24 months of age. Some of the late autumn born animals will be killed from the shed.”

First draft: “The first draft of calves bought during autumn 2020 are being slaughtered this week. There are 10 Angus and Hereford heifers being drafted off grass. No meal is fed to heifers until early September, depending on grass quality. Home-grown rolled barley is fed at this point.”

Silage: “Second-cut silage is finished up this week with just over 30ac in the pit. Grass quality is good and yields were pleasing. We will take a small third cut at the end of the summer and continue to take bales out of the grazing block as well.”

Sheep: “We run 250 ewes, criss-crossing between Texel and Rouge breeding. Lambs were weaned at the start of July and drafted for slaughter every two weeks through our local group.”

Red clover silage: “We normally grow around 10ac of red clover which we cut and bale for silage. This is targeted to weaned calves during winter to drive weight gain and reduce concentrate use. I have earmarked 9ac for reseeding with red clover this summer.”

Hosting farm visits: “I am a demonstration farm through CAFRE, highlighting grassland management for beef finishing. I had two group visits last week and one the previous week. It’s great to be once again hosting farmers in person on-farm.”