Research Challenge Fund Dairy-Origin Beef Farm Walks
Dairy-origin beef production will be the focus of two farm walks on 24th and 26th April at the farms of Eric Reid, 15 Crewcatt Road, Richhill, BT61 8QN and Robert, David 7 martin Sloan, 32 Lisnastrean Road, Lisburn, BT27 5PB. Research findings from a DARD and AgriSearch jointly funded Research Challenge Fund on-farm project will be up for discussion.  The focus of the farm walks will be to outline the management required to achieve optimal growth performance from dairy-origin cattle to meet target live weights at specific ages.  AFBI researchers will be on hand to update producers on the...

Take part in a ‘growth targets for suckler heifers’ competition at Beef NI 2012 next Tues, March 6 in Dungannon Farmers Market and you could win a valuable prize. A test for BVD infection in your cattle herd or a free silage analysis by AFBI, Hillsborough can be won. AgriSearch will have a joint stand with AFBI and CAFRE at this NBA Beef NI 2012 event. Key messages featured from AgriSearch co-funded research will include the Research Challenge Fund BVD prevalence study, suckler and dairy beef systems, BovIS, on-line growth monitoring, low input forages and the benefits of cattle grazing...

CAFRE workshop highlights results of AgriSearch funded research on calf management
Andrew Brown of AFBI Hillsborough and Iain Smith (Lisburn Veterinary Clinic) highlighting the variability in colostrum quality that exists and the potential impact on calf immune status at the recent calf workshop organised by CAFRE – Dairy Development Advisers.  During the two hour workshop, the group discussed the management of the cow and calf around calving and some of the DARD and AgriSearch funded research into calf nutrition.  The group heard from Mike Davies (Dairy herd manager) and Andrew Brown (heifer unit manager) on what management practises are used within the Hillsborough...

AgriSearch Sheep Farmer Co-Researchers meeting to discuss latest results
Farmers involved in AgriSearch funded on-farm sheep research met at AFBI, Hillsborough, Northern Ireland recently to be updated on the latest results by Dr Ronald Annett. Looking first of all at Lameness Dr Annett report that the findings to date had indicated that the main problems were scald, foot rot and shelly hoof, there were some granulomas and injuries with no CODD or white line abscesses being found. Prevalence of shelly hoof, scald and foot rot differs between farm type (hill and lowland), farms, season and genotype.  The reoccurrence of footrot and shelly hoof suggest...

New Final Report Released on Heifer Management as AgriSearch PhD Student Alastair Boyle Graduates
A new final report on dairy heifer management is now available to download from the AgriSearch website. “Strategies for maximising health, welfare and performance in first lactation heifers” was undertaken as a PhD study by Dr Alastair Boyle who recently graduated from Queens.  Dr Niamh O’Connell and Dr Conrad Ferris also formed part of the research team. It takes 2 years and approximately £1,220 to rear a dairy heifer to the point of replacement. Heifer replacement rate impacts on overall herd profitability and greenhouse gas emissions. The calving period is highly stressful for dairy...