Finding the real potential of milk from grazing

Finding the real potential of milk from grazing

Thursday, April 16, 2009

A number of farmers, who include a few BGS members who measure grass, have agreed to supply this information and to take grass samples for a DairyCo project, with its extension officer Piers Badnell and reports will be published each week on its website. 

The farms picked for this seasons measurements are examples of excellent grassland management, the aim being to demonstrate the true potential of grazed grass if managed well, says Piers. 

It will show how much milk can come from well-managed grass through the season. "Your management can have an effect on the content and persistence of ME and CP in grass. 

"The only part of the analysis you can't control is the dry matter, but these fluctuations can be managed if you know your ME and CP and manage your grass well." 

Growth rates are being measured using a rising platemeter weekly on farms across the UK. The figure presented by each of the farms is an average of four designated paddocks in the rotation that are representative of the farm and hold its place in the rotation well.  

Grass samples are also being taken and cost about £12 a sample. The results on grass growth rate and quality are being published on the DairyCo farm management website, under Grass and grazing analysis and updated each week. 

In the first month of sampling, the lowest energy level recorded was still as high as 11.7MJ/kg of ME and the highest 13MJ/kg. 

Click here www.dairyco.org.uk/default.aspx?DN=e89b63c1-cdb5-4d18-8f59-95524aeef6e8 to see the latest report.

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