Alan and Tanya Winstanley have seen marked improvements in yields and herd health since using Lintec and BOCM PAULS’ it3 rationing and Visiolac technology as part of a new approach to cow management.
At Highfields Farm, Audlem, left to right, BOCM PAULS nutritionist Clive Slawson, Tanya and Alan Winstanley and their vet Charlie Lambert, of Lambert, Leonard and May.
The couple, who milk 383 cows in a family partnership at Highfields Farm, Woodhouse Lane, Audlem, near Crewe, adopted a new policy change in 2009 with their vet and nutritionist to improve herd performance.
Lintec trials began on the farm in July 2010 along with it3 rationing. A joint initiative to improve feed conversion efficiency with BOCM and Keenan began in December 2010.
In March 209, 290 cows were in milk giving an average yield of 8,828 litres. In July 2011 yields for the increased number of cows were running at 10,093 litres.
Margin over concentrates per cow, at a consistent milk price, has risen from £1,918 in 2010 to £2,084 while MOC and purchased feeds has increased from £1,828 over the same period to £1,930. Feed conversion efficiency has risen from 1.25 litres per kg fed in December last year to 1.5.
The herd is milked three times a day with cows peaking up to 60 litres a day to average 34 litres.
“Since Linec was added to the diet in July last year it has prolonged lactation curves. There have also been marked improvements in yield and health since using the diagnostic tool Visiolac,” said Alan.
“We are able to adjust raw materials to balance my forages before they have impacted on production.
“There has been a reduction in lameness and there are fewer retained cleansings, displaced abomasums have significantly reduced and the cows are in a much better condition to go into the milking herd,” he added.
As part of the new policy to improve health and productivity, a full health plan has been adopted for the herd and youngstock, automatic calf feeders have been introduced and late lactation and dry cow management has been overhauled.
Investment has been made in a 50 point GEA rotary parlour with pedometers and producing full management reports.
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