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NWF Weekly Grass Watch – 16th July 2021

Grass Growth
Daily average grass growth rates in GB have continued in an upward trend, averaging 64.4kg DM/ha/day. Average growth rates continue to be above the 6-year average of 51kg DM/ha/day and slightly above the 2020 average of 60kg DM/ha/day for the same period.
Yorkshire and the East Midlands see the highest growth rates at 71kg DM/ha/day, with Yorkshire seeing an increase of 26kg DM/ha/day.

Milk Yield from Grazing (MYFG)
The MYFG average for GB has increased significantly to M+12litres/day, a M+6.1litres/day increase on the previous week’s average. This increase can be attributed to an increase in potential DMI of 2.3kg/day, to an average of 12.1kg/day, alongside a rise in estimated ME to 11.6MJ/kg DM. The 6-year average for the same period remains slightly lower at, while the 2020 average remains much lower at M+10.15litres/day.
Wales and the West have the highest potential MYFG figure at M+13.8litres/day, meanwhile the North West has the lowest potential MYFG figure of M+7.1litres/day. As always, individual farm analysis is recommended to ensure accurate rationing practice.

Heat Stress Management
The average temperature humidity index has reached 70, indicating a mild to high risk of heat stress, which can negatively impact animal health, welfare and performance. With the upcoming forecast of hot temperatures and humid weather across all regions, it is essential to highlight the importance of management strategies to help mitigate the risk of heat stress:
• Ensure animals have access to ad-lib, clean, fresh drinking water:
– During hot weather cattle substantially increase their water intake to replace water lost through respiration and perspiration. Water consumption is also the quickest method for cattle to reduce their core temperatures.
• Ensure animals have access to shade:
– The provision of shade can help cattle manage heat stress, through reducing solar heat load on the animals.
• Adjust diets accordingly to dry matter intake decreases:
– Through increasing energy density of diets and ensuring there is enough effective fibre to maximise rumination.


Source:  Trouw Nutrition

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