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Glanbia Monitor Farm Update – Peter Mongey

This week Richard O’Brien, co-ordinator of the Glanbia monitor farm programme, visited Peter Mongey’s farm in Slane, Co. Meath.

Peter is currently milking 86 cows on his 29 ha milking platform. In total, he is farming 41 ha. He has 20 cows to calf this Autumn. All maiden heifers are contract reared.

Current Farm Performance 23/09/2016

Milk Yield18.11 kg/cow/day
Milk solids1.45 kgMS/cow/day
Meal1.5 kg/cow/day
Average Farm Cover1,025 kg dm/ha
Cover per cow348 kg dm/cow
Pre grazing yield2,400 kg dm /ha
Demand49 kg dm /ha/day
Growth74kg dm /ha/day

‘The cows are milking well given the time of year. So far the cows have produced 320 kg of milk solids per cow, which is 20 kg up from last year. This increase in milk solids is primarily due to a large increase in fat percentage. ’ says Peter.

Grass wedge 23/09/2016

The average farm cover is on target at 1,025 kg dm/ha. The pre grazing yield of 2,400 kg dm/ha is on the high side but clean out has been good. Peter is happy with this cover but would not like it to go any higher.

Grass growth to date

Grass has been growing well this year and the autumn budget is on target. Grass growth to date is up on the same period last year with an extra 2t/ha more grass growth. Peter has been working on soil fertility over the past few years. He spread 2t/acre of lime two years ago across the farm and is planning on spreading more lime this year. He has also focussed attention on improving phosphorus and potassium levels by spreading more P and K fertiliser. Breeding and calving update:

Peter scanned the herd recently. After 13 weeks of breeding there was 9% of the herd not in-calf which is a good result. Ninety-six per cent maiden heifers scanned in-calf after 12 weeks of breeding. Autumn calving should start around the 13th of October. The Autumn calving cows will be housed full time once they calf and will be fed good quality bale silage and fed on average 6 kg of meal. Over the last few years Peter has reduced the number of autumn calving cows by half to match cow numbers with liquid and winter milk contracts. As a result of having less Autumn cows calving, Peter has applied for the milk reduction scheme.


Richard O’Brien, co-ordinator of the Glanbia monitor farm programme, says that grass is growing well and a lot of farmers are grazing heavy covers. Richard advises farmers to use 12 hour grazing allocations and back fencing to help with clean out and reduce poaching damage. Richard also warns farmers that the deadline for slurry spreading is fast approaching. Its important to plan where slurry is going as time is running out with most farmers starting to close paddocks for next spring on the 5th of October.

First Published 28 September 2016

Tagged with: GII Agribusiness All Dairy


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