- Some pastures will need some type of renovation. Have you decided what needs to be over-sown and what should be re-sown?
- With summer almost past us, the days are becoming shorter and nights colder. With this in mind one of the sowing 'risks' - temperature - is decreasing. Ryegrass germination and establishment are significantly restricted when soil temperatures rise above 25 degrees. It is now farmers need to decide what they perceive the risk of a poor establishment and weight this up against the benefit of having a strong productive pasture moving into winter.
- Remember to leave enough time for the pasture to establish itself, rather than grazing it as soon as there is some greenness and then suffering through the winter due to the pasture not being able to perform well.
- The next six to eight weeks can be the most important weeks in the year for an autumn calving cow as she transitions from a dry cow to a cow producing at her peak. It is critical to minimise the level of stress the cow will encounter during this period. Springers should be feed a diet similar to what they will be offered in the milking herd to ensure their rumen is stable throughout the transition
- Check the ration of all classes of stock on the farm. Are their requirements being met? Pay particular attention to the feed requirements of your autumn calving cows. They need more feed and higher quality feed in comparison to the spring calving cows in the herd.
- Carefully monitor freshly calved autumn cows for mastitis.
- Check for pink eye, particularly amongst the young stock.
- Make sure any fertiliser you want to spread this autumn has been ordered. It is also a good idea to be ready to go when it arrives, so make sure your equipment is serviced.
- Average March evaporation rates means irrigation in the order of 25mm should be applied over a week for the higher valley regions and 30mm for the lower country.
- Check if the liners need to be replaced - Countdown Down Under recommends they should be replaced after 2,500 cow milkings.
- Make sure the plate cooler is working properly and you are using the coldest source of water possible. Check the condense fins are clean and not blocked with debris.