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May 2015

Advanced Calf Starter Feeds

By Wynnstay Dairy News 4 years ago

Start n Wean® nuts

The market leading, 18% protein, calf starter/creep nut, formulated for palatability & performance.
Suitable for all calf rearing systems, where early intakes and high growth rates are required. For feeding from 3 days to 10/12 weeks of age. Contains Greenline™ - ‘mother-smell’ stimulant with specific sugars and a natural sweetener, sweeter than sugar is included ensuring early uptakes. Available in 25kg bags, 500kg tote bags and bulk. Also available with Deccox®

Super Krunch + AlfAlfa

Extremely palatable 18% protein, coarse calf starter, suitable for all calf rearing systems, where early
intakes and high growth rates are required. For feeding from 3 days to 12 weeks of age. AlfAlfa & NIS pellets provide digestible fibre to aid rapid rumen development, stimulates intake help counteract any acidity and help ensure trouble-free weaning

Kibbled linseed flakes, micronized flaked beans and peas provide high levels of specific amino acids to meet the demands for high quality protein over the first few weeks of a calf’s life and high levels of digestible undegradable protein (DUP), ensuring rapid growth and efficient digestion.

Available in 25kg bags and 500kg tote bags


Palatable 18% protein, coarse calf starter, suitable for all calf rearing systems, where early intakes and high growth rates are required. For feeding from 3 days to 12 weeks of age. Rolled barley and flaked maize for rapid, efficient growth particularly from weaning onwards. High digestible fibre sources to aid rapid rumen development, stimulate intake and help ensure trouble-free weaning. Kibbled linseed flakes, micronized flaked peas and beans, micronized flakes soya provide high levels of specific amino acids to meet the demands for high quality protein over the first few weeks of a calf’s life. A specialist supplement is included ensuring good healthy performance.

Available in 25kg bags or 500kg tote bags.

To find out more and for expert advice contact our specialists.

Getting the Measure of Grass

By Wynnstay Dairy News 4 years ago

Boost Productivity

Measuring sward height is beneficial in set-stocking, strip grazing and semi-rotational systems. By working to grazing height targets, you can increase grass utilisation by around 10-15% and promote more high quality grass growth later in the season. When grass falls below target height, move stock on to new area, or tighten up the grazing area when height moves above target.

Using a sward stick, take 20 to 40 random height measurements of the undisturbed grass leaves across the field. These should include the height of rejected patches around dung pats, but avoid seed heads, stems, weeds, gateways, drinking troughs, field margins and areas under trees.

Do this regularly in the spring to track the direction of grazed grass height. Once you have worked out the average height you can decide what to do next. For the more technically-focused farmer, the sward stick measurement will also enable calculations on the amounts of dry matter in the grass, as well as the height.

“It’s very important pastures recover before being grazed again, so regular applications of fertiliser with a balance of all nutrients is important, keeping track of pasture growth will tell you if the  applications are right.

Profitable Grass Growth

Working out the true feed value of grass can be difficult, but with a little attention to detail farmers can significantly increase the proportion of feed grown on farm – reducing feed costs. While compound feeds conveniently display all the required information on the label, grass is not quite so straightforward. However, a few simple measurements can really improve productivity.
“In almost all cases, the cheapest type of feed is grass grown on-farm,” says GrowHow Farm Adviser Hefin Llwyd. “Anything you can do to make more of the grass available to your livestock will bring dividends.
“Some farmers adopt paddock grazing and use either a rising plate meter or a sward stick to measure grass. Graze a small area intensively for a day or two then move stock on. This is great for utilisation because the animals eat most of the grass.”
Nitrogen & Sulphur to Optimise Grazing Performace

For more information email dairy@wynnstay.co.uk

Root Crop Guide Infographic

By CorrinaJeffreys 4 years ago

Root Crop Guide Infographic

Get Tough with Thistles

By Wynnstay Dairy News 4 years ago

Thistles come a close second to docks in the list of most troublesome perennial weeds in grassland. The most common thistle species in the UK are spear thistle and creeping thistle.

Spear thistles are biennial and have sharp, spiny eaves. They only spread by seed that can disperse as far as 30m from the mother plant. Often unnoticed in the first year, in the second they can grow as wide as a dinner plate before flowering. It is vital to stop them seeding in July.

Creeping thistles spread across the ground and once established, the root mass underground is greater than the amount of plant above ground, robbing the grass of moisture and nutrients.

Where thistles grow, grass cannot grow – so in silage crops they take the place of valuable feed. Research shows a 10% infestation of thistles leads to 10% less grass for cutting. Silage containing a high proportion of thistles will also be rejected at the feed trough due to the nasty prickles.

Thistles can also help spread infectious diseases such as Orf, a highly contagious viral disease of sheep, causing scabby lesions around the mouth and nostrils of lambs and the teats of lactating ewes. Topping is wasted effort Chopping down thistles with a mower or topper gives instant satisfaction but offers only short-term control. The roots remain largely unaffected and vigorous re-growth soon appears. It is a maintenance operation at very best.

Topping also leaves trash on the surface, which can smother any grass trying to grow underneath it.
Eighty per cent of livestock farmers asked in a survey about the level of weed control achieved 12 months after topping, said it had not delivered good enough results to warrant the time, effort and cost of doing it.

Spraying with an appropriate herbicide designed to tackle the specific weeds or situation offers a longerterm solution which, if done correctly will eradicate the problem.

Herbicide choice
There are two main options when choosing a grassland herbicide - contact or systemic/translocated products. Contact herbicides based on phenoxy carboxylic acid chemistry like MCPA have been around for years, but only work on the areas of the weed they touch. This has a quick effect on the plant above ground – but the active ingredient fails to penetrate inside sufficiently to finish it off.

In reality it is merely chemical topping. Some infestations may need spraying several times with this type of product to achieve the same effect as spraying just once with a more modern translocated one, with all the associated costs of making successive applications.

Modern translocated herbicides such as Thistlex from Dow AgroSciences are regarded as the most reliable solution for controlling perennial weeds in grassland.

The way they work ensures the active ingredients get right inside the plant, travelling around the internal liquid transport system, reaching deep into the roots as well as the stems and leaves.

Safe to grass
An added advantage of Thistlex over MCPA is that it is much more selective – only working on broad-leaved plants and not affecting the grass in any way. In some situations, older products can hold back grass growth. At a time when farmers are seeking to grow and feed as much grass as possible to cut input costs – this is an important consideration when selecting which herbicide to use.

“Thistles need controlling because they compete with grass for space, light, nutrients and water and are unpalatable to stock, so large infestations have to be treated,” explains Dow Agrosciences’ grassland specialist Andy Bailey.
“The combination of clopyralid and triclopyr in Thistlex maximises the activity on thistles, giving more than 85% control 12 months after application.
“Apply between 1 March and 31 October and use once per year at a rate of 1l/ha in a water volume of 200l/ha. Use higher water volumes up to 400l/ha, where thistle numbers are high or the grass sward is dense.
“Thistlex can be used on silage and grazing fields. Remove stock during spraying and for seven days after. Where applied to silage land, spray at least three weeks before cutting to allow time for the active ingredients to work fully.
“Spray when the weeds are at the rosette stage and up to 20cm across or high. If they are larger than this, it would be better to top them and spray the active regrowth two to three weeks later.”
For more information on Thistlex please speak to your Wynnstay Representative or Store.

*Terms & Conditions
Use plant protection products safely. Always read the label and product information before use. For further information including warning phrases and symbols refer to label. For full product information please ask a member of staff in store or your Wynnstay Representative.

Grass Silage Production Guidelines

By Wynnstay Dairy News 4 years ago

Grass Silage Production Infographic from Wynnstay
Wynnstay Group Plc - Grass Silage Production Guidelines.