This week average grass growth rates have fallen, to 50kg DM/ha/day, 8.4kg DM/ha/day less the 6-year average, thanks to drier growing conditions. With changes in / potential lack of grass availability it is important to monitor, and measure covers to give an accurate insight into availability on farm.
Milk Yield from Grazing (MYFG)
Average MYFG across GB has fallen to M+8.2 litres/day, versus last week’s value of M+10.5 litres/day which can mainly be attributed to a drop in potential DMI. No MYFG samples from Scotland and the East, were received this week, however within the samples we did receive there is large variation. Some samples indicate a potential negative MYFG figure due to reduced potential DMI. For accuracy in rationing, farms should look to have pasture analysed with buffer feeding considered where intakes may be compromised.
With a decline in grass growth seen across the majority of regions this week, grazing deficits may be an issue. It is essential that good grassland management strategies are used to optimise grazing quality.
- This includes monitoring sward heights to ensure target entry and residual covers are achieved, as well as managing rotation lengths, and ensuring stocking densities are optimal.
- Other considerations to maximise grass utilisation are:
- Tailor buffer rations
- Adjust buffer rations based on grazing available and grass quality, which varies throughout the grazing season- taking grass samples as often as possible, will help with accurate rations.
- Setting DMI targets
- Target specific intakes and supplement accordingly. If these targets are not reached investigate where the bottlenecks are.
- Formulate compounds to match grass
- By using NutriOpt parameters we can balance grass and compound much more effectively.