Saturday, 27 April 2013

Empty silage pit

All gone yesterday but there's enough good hay to keep cows going for 7-10 days and then quite a few less good ones they might eat outside especially overnight.
So not too worried - unlike last year when they were on bought in barley straw by now, and it was so wet there was no hope of going out until well into May.

This year it is dry but grass is only just starting to grow - it looks good though unlike some years when it grows early on then gets checked by cold and wet, making it looking yellow or purple.

There are seven 8-10 month olds born last year to wean before the rest go out so should do that either Sunday or Monday.
A couple of those might go to Malton either next Friday or the following week if settled down enough, the others will probably be off down Castleton road for the summer.

Haven't exactly decided what is going out down there yet to be honest!
I want at least a couple of cows with calves so they are a more sensible group.
Last year was a bit of a nightmare walking them the mile or so home, they ran back to the field twice due to scary vehicles bearing down on them. Generally they will follow a tractor with bale on the back and it goes relatively smoothly, but increasing traffic levels in recent years - especially impatient delivery vans is becoming a problem.

Nice rain

Wintry showers this morning really added up to about 11mm.
Late afternoon the sun came out and things looked green despite the cold.
This should be enough to strike the barley so just need warmth now.

Market yesterday

Friday, 26 April 2013

Malton again

Took M+F Simmental twins and a Sim steer which had always been a bit weedy because his Limousin heifer mother didn't have that much milk.
The Heifer twin was a bit disappointing but the others did OK, although they were older than the ones I took last weeks so will have eaten a lot more stuff!
Sunny and springlike until shortly after I took this then large hailstones rattled on the roof.

At home it stayed dry again which is a pity for the recently sown spring barley  -which could really do with a proper soak.
I think there's reasonable moisture at depth but can imagine it emerging over a long time if we don't get rain soon. I got a pre-emergence style spray this year called Kula but it needs moisture to work properly - however it can be applied post-em too,

Friday, 19 April 2013

Cattle to Malton

These four heifers born last April were booked to go to Ruswarp last month but it was a blizzard on the day so could not go.
They could have gone to Malton any week since but I seem to have been very busy with one thing and another, plus today was a special sale.
Prices seem down a bit to me though, I think people are worried about lack of grass and watching numbers going into next winter already with straw looking likely to be a particular problem area.

Thursday, 18 April 2013

Yard Cam

I decided to get two more of the Wansview cams so as to be able to see the hidden corner of the calving area and also monitor the yard.
A particularly nice feature is the motion detect which will grab quickfire images of any movement:

Victim #1

Victim #2 - Bede delivering seeds

Saturday, 13 April 2013

Nice calf

Last of the slurry

The pit is getting so low that the sloppy stuff barely covers the stirrer - making it ineffective.

There's a pile of more solid stuff to spread later on the hay fields where sheep are lambing now.
Starting the main fertiliser session tomorrow if not rainy.

Nell seems to find the stirring incredibly exciting, so much so she fell in the other day.

Thursday, 11 April 2013

Slurry spreading

This job has been rather delayed but this week has been ideal with dry conditions and not windy.
I've done several hay/silage fields and there is now only 2 or 3 feet of sloppy poop in the pit.
If I get one more afternoon at it there really won't be enough to stir anymore since it needs the blades to be covered.

However there's quite a pile of semi-solid stuff where I push in, especially on the ramp where it had to be dropped during snowy/frosty/wet spells through winter and has formed a sort of muck heap.
That can go in the spreader for the two fields off Kildale road when the sheep are shut out early May.

It would be nice if we got a little rain to wash it in before the mild/warm air gets here on Sunday but after talking that up to a worrying extent earlier it now looks like a very half-hearted event over here by the east coast.

Thursday, 4 April 2013

Fertiliser at last

Put a couple of 600kg bags of 20-10-10 on the sheep fields today.


Last year’s weed-wiping is starting to look very effective.