Grass growth rates have seen a slight increase this week, averaging 56.9kg DM/ha/day across GB. However, certain regions such as the Northeast have seen an average increase up to 22kg DM/ha/day. Where changes in growth rates occur, it is important to consider forage availability and planning to make the most from forage.
Milk Yield from Grazing (MYFG)
MYFG has fallen to an average of M+10.5litres/day this week, due to a potential drop in DMI. Regionally, the Northeast and Yorkshire sees the highest value at M+14.3litres/day alongside an NFEPB milk loss value of 0 litres/day. While Scotland sees the lowest potential MYFG at M+7.6litres/day.
With warmer temperatures expected for many regions over the coming week, it is important to begin considering management practices that mitigate the risk of heat stress.
• Heat stress reduces DMI and can implicate milk production by up to 15%, as well as reduce butterfat levels and reproductive functions:
Access to 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.
Access to shade:
• The provision of shade can help cattle manage heat stress, by reducing solar heat load on the animals.
Adjust diets accordingly to dry matter intake decreases:
• Through increasing energy density of diets and ensuring enough effective fibre to maximise rumination.
Use appropriate targeted feed additives that address the root cause of heat stress and induced leaky gut such as Selko /Lactibute.