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Pasture Jerseys. Experience with Jersey cows from 1965/66 at the age of 6 years old My father milked 15-20 Jersey cows once a day by hand from natural.

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Presentation on theme: "Pasture Jerseys. Experience with Jersey cows from 1965/66 at the age of 6 years old My father milked 15-20 Jersey cows once a day by hand from natural."— Presentation transcript:

1 Pasture Jerseys

2 Experience with Jersey cows from 1965/66 at the age of 6 years old My father milked Jersey cows once a day by hand from natural pastures in a dry area with rainfall of about 500 mm/annum Production between 5-15 lit/cow/day

3 Own farming career Own farming career started in 1981 together with my father – sheep farming Bought 10 cows in Feb 1981 Bought cheapest cows available, any breed AI with relevant purebred sires from the start Sold milk in cans to Nestle – no bulk tanks

4 Slowly build numbers to about 50 cows in milk by end 1982 Turn to dairy only in 1983 Build 8 a side switch over herringbone parlour Increase to 150 cows by 1986

5 Bought own farm in 1986 Increase numbers to 250 cows Bought present farm in 1994 Milk 800 cows – 90% + purebred Jerseys 36 unit rotary 125 ha centre pivot irrigation 250 ha dry land pastures

6 My Jersey Experience Grow up with Jersey cows Join Albany Jersey cattle Club in 1982 Register with Jersey SA in 1984 Production was about 4000lit/cow/year Local AI bulls - mostly sons of Milestone Generator, Marlu Fashion Legend

7 Import first semen from USA in 1984 – A Nine Top Brass Daughters started to milk in 1987 Lowest first lactation production was more than that of mother – six daughters average over 5000 lit compared to herd average of 4000 lit Best daughter did 6000 lit

8 Top Brass daughters lit better then local progeny Importation quota's Used maximum allowed Lion Pride Lynx, Brass Major, Brass Top, Mills Homestead, Be Magic, JS Quicksilver Royal, Opportunity, Hermitage, Lester, Yankee Chief, Boomer Sooner, Malcolm Althea sons – Alf, Dunker, Adonis

9 Highlight Picked Lester as a young bull in 1990/1 30 Lester daughters born in 1992 Sold two Lester sons out of Royal daughters to AI Kamma widely used Sold 4 Lester daughters at 1994 National Sale for highest average price Herd production 5700 lit Adonis/Sooner/Opportunity 8000 first lactation

10 The system Started off as “cow” farmer. Focus on cow - production Visited NZ in 1993 Become a “grass” farmer Focus on grass – cow “harvester” to turn grass into milk/profit From about 2010 – pasture yields dropped

11 Now a “soil” farmer Focus healthy sustainable soil – Grow quality pastures and use cow to convert to profit Not organic – rather environmental friendly Compost, chicken manure, combinations of pastures, clovers etc. – less chemical fertilizer Soil health and sustainability high priority

12 Feeding system kg’s DM from pastures 4-5 kg’s concentrates Maize and minerals Add silage when pastures not enough Add protein Jan – Apr – supplement pasture quality

13 Right cows for the system? High “genetic merit” Focus on production and type -mostly USA Focus changed – cow must utilize pastures Feeding to much concentrates- not healthy for the cows Find that kg’s of concentrate/milking is maximum for healthy rumen. Lower concentrate feeding – High producers lost to much weight Cows milked to “much” – Fertility problems increase

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15 Turn more towards NZ genetics Import Judds Admiral and Parkwood Casper semen Ernest, Senator Sam, Panache, Charlie’s Lad, Rivers Imperial, Erect, Mans Man Lost to much production from third generation NZ “Cross” between NZ and “High merit”

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17 “High merit” genetics not enough strength – Aus - Badger very good. Select NZ semen for high production/good type Manhatten, Murmer Aus - Larfalot, Gainfull Balance between production and strength

18 Profit drivers Pasture utilisation Reduction of costs

19 Pasture cows Production Medium production First lactation – Second lactation – 4500 – 5000 Mature lactations – Not more than !!!!!!! Peaks – First lactation 18 – Mature 25

20 Reduce replacement cost Average of 5 lactations Rear 25 % - 25 heifers/100 cows Type Health traits

21 Strength – must not lose to much condition at peak – fertility Good udders Low somatic cell count Feet and legs

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26 Bulls Most impressive Top Brass Royal Lester Judds Admiral Badger Manhatten

27 Biggest disappointments Great Magic Squire Jas Byg

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