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NWF Weekly Grass Watch – 20th August 2021

Grass Growth

Average daily grass growth has increased again to 55kg DM/ha/day, which is above both the 6-year and 2020 averages of 47 and 42kg DM/ha/day respectively. However, there is considerable variation seen across regions, with Scotland rising 22kg DM/ha/day to an average of 60kg DM/ha/day and the East Midlands falling by 7kg DM/ha/day to the lowest average of 42kg DM/ha/day.

Milk Yield from Grazing (MYFG)

MYFG has remained almost constant, averaging M+4.8litres/day compared to M+4.7litres/day from the previous week. The slight increase is attributable to a small increase in potential grass DMI. The average remains below the 2020 average of M+7.25litres/day and the 6-year average of M+6.8litres/day.
Regionally, the North-East and Yorkshire has the highest potential MYFG at M+14.2litres/day while Scotland sees the lowest figure at M+2.5litres/day thanks to variation in potential grass DMI. It is important to note that some regions reported have a small sample size, with no submissions received from the East. Individual farms should look to analyse for ration accuracy.

Excess Nitrogen

Nitrogen utilisation in grazing cows may be low due to high concentrations of rapidly soluble and degradable protein in grass. In combination with low sugar levels, nitrogen efficiency in the rumen can be compromised. The average NFEPB value of grass has continued to rise to 91.5g/kg DM, based on the average potential grass DMI of 9kg/day. This suggests average NFEPB from grass may be as high as 801g/day, where rations should look to target an overall figure of 0-200g/d. As a result, NFEPB milk loss continues to be higher than previously seen in the season, averaging 0.6litres/day.
Control strategies to help minimise losses in production and improve nitrogen use efficiency may include feeding a fermentable source of energy best suited to individual farms. This will help optimise the balance between effective rumen degradable protein and fermentable

Source:  Trouw Nutrition

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