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Dairy Calves 2024



  • Registered Users Posts: 8,052 ✭✭✭funkey_monkey

    I hope the turnip was fried off in the pan after the bacon was done.

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,514 ✭✭✭straight

    That's my point. If Bass is making money and others can't, maybe it time to have a chat with oneself besides blaming others.

  • Registered Users Posts: 18,140 ✭✭✭✭Bass Reeves

    Yes I made money but the lad that had those cattle for 18 months broke even at best. Now I bought them in a mart so technically that was the value. I have probably gone 20-30 on the 500 Friesians just like the ones last Monday. Mind you most stores that I buy are light for there age usually.

    Slava Ukrainii

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,557 ✭✭✭White Clover

    I'd say Bass would admit that he is farming on mostly very good free draining limestone land. That has a massive bearing on profitability.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,553 ✭✭✭older by the day

    Plus, I was watching farmer Phil, he quoted 415 for a high maize ration. If you live in "far away poor land " everything is expensive. Straw 26 euro round bale, high maize ration 450. Higher fert usage, longer winters.

    Ground type makes a huge difference. Even north versus south facing ground. How far from the sea you are. I could not believe how much snow we got here last week compared to ground at sea level, and how long it took the north facing places to thaw

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  • Registered Users Posts: 4,843 ✭✭✭mf240

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,192 ✭✭✭weatherbyfoxer

    Seen OK 3 week old fr bulls selling for €5 in Enniscorty yesterday,though it very early in the spring for it?

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,433 ✭✭✭cjpm

    If he sold 30 he’d have been like the Wolf of Wall St!

  • Registered Users Posts: 9,203 ✭✭✭tanko

    You’re making the assumption that his figures are the truth, several times when it was pointed out that the fabled figures were a pile of rubbish, the oh my fat thumb hit the wrong button on the wee screen on my phone line was quickly trotted out. The phrase lies, damn lies and statistics comes to mind.

  • Registered Users Posts: 18,140 ✭✭✭✭Bass Reeves


    I reminded you I showed my 2020 account figures here on this forum over a year ago so the figures are not fables. Last year's were better.

    Ya I agree that the land I have is good however it suffers from drought very easily. However alot of the the land is similar. A few lads f@@king around with suckler cows or buying calves and sling as stores.

    I am stocked at virtually 170 kgs/ HA. I buy a poorer stores and try to maximise my profit from them. I just keep costs under control and make decent silage.

    Slava Ukrainii

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  • Registered Users Posts: 9,203 ✭✭✭tanko

    Can you say where you’re getting the 0.8 figure for calves/cow you quote?

  • Registered Users Posts: 18,140 ✭✭✭✭Bass Reeves

    It has been constantly published for the last ten years it has changed little.

    Just look at calving intervals, lad holding onto a cow to give her another chance. I think the average suckler calving intervals is nearly 400 days on average

    Ask any Teagasc advisor for the figures. I know I was in discussions groups and those were the figures quoted as well.

    Slava Ukrainii

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,100 ✭✭✭Grueller

    National statistics from the latest ICBF national suckler report.

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    You’d be surprised if you see the cows that hit say over 150 on the index. I have a good shot of them and they have significant amounts of Holstein breeding mixed in with Angus or whatever.

    The empty rate needs to tackled with scanning/improving breeding/ better culling

  • Registered Users Posts: 9,203 ✭✭✭tanko

    Wrong figure yet again, it has changed. The latest figure is 0.87. No suckler farmer i know gives cows a second chance also farmers keeping cull cows to fatten skews that figure. You have some kind of irrational hatred of Suckler bred stock and twist figures to suit this agenda, it’s laughable. The figures you claim for Dairy cross beef stock are mostly nonsense.

  • Registered Users Posts: 19,023 ✭✭✭✭Donald Trump

    A lot of the requirements that were involved with derogation are either in, or coming in for everyone eventually. It isn't as big a line to cross now

  • Registered Users Posts: 19,023 ✭✭✭✭Donald Trump

    The official quoted interval is probably going to be overstated due to cows aborting and missing a year also due to some having dead calves and the owner not registering the calves (which they are supposed to do).

    I'm not saying that it happens often, but if you have 20 cows which are 365 interval and one has a dead calf that doesn't get registered then, on paper, you have 19 with 365 day and 1 with 730 so your average on paper is going up there. You'll have 39 calvings on paper with interval of 374.

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,100 ✭✭✭Grueller

    It will only be 730 if she is allowed calve again next year?

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,100 ✭✭✭Grueller

    Tanko Bass said 0.8 weaned. Take in 5% mortality and you are back at 0.82 from the 0.87 you quoted.

    Money is and can be made from sucklers, just not enough.

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    Does it pay to keep freisian bullocks 3 winters?

    This is dairy calf form I know but the reality is there isn’t a massive margin in any beef enterprise.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 19,023 ✭✭✭✭Donald Trump

    For that cow, yes.

    She might take to another calf and be kept. She wouldn't necessarily have to be a passenger if her own calf dies. I'm sure it happens.

  • Registered Users Posts: 19,023 ✭✭✭✭Donald Trump

  • Registered Users Posts: 29,072 ✭✭✭✭whelan2

    Had a farmer buying fr bull calves here today, we agreed 60 euro last week. Youngest calf 10 days to 18 days. He said a farmer rang him this morning offering him Friesian bull calves for 10 euro.

  • Registered Users Posts: 18,140 ✭✭✭✭Bass Reeves

    The figure I gave was for calves weaned/ cow. 0.87 is the calves registered/ cow. Because of schemes farmers were registering any calvrs born to draw payments.

    I expect mortality would drop that figure to the figure I said was given by Teagasc at discussion groups.

    Just as an add on it seems in last week rag that Matt Dempsey commented that last year they lost no animal on the farm. This was due to the change to dairy cross stock. Previously with suckler bred cattle there average mortality was 4-5/years. I think they used feed a lot of bulls.

    Slava Ukrainii

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,028 ✭✭✭minerleague

    I know you argue against sucklers and maybe you're right but plenty at your game making little or nothing too ( which you are probably grateful for)

    For myself killing my own stock sucklers pay fairly well at beef prices like we have now.

  • Registered Users Posts: 18,140 ✭✭✭✭Bass Reeves

    There is still a cost of getting a derogation. Many farmers avoided it by exporting slurry that were borderline. Previously if you were in derogation you could not be in GLAS, I am not sure about ACRES. Getting a planner to do a derogation for you costs 2-300 euro.

    It all depends on when you buy the bullock and what happens after that. I saw yearling Friesians today 175 kgs sold for 250 euro, I saw He/ AA heifers 157 kgs sold for 240. There is a lot of 8-10 sucklers around that are sub 300 kgs.

    It's a devils jobs to put a calf under a cow. An older dairy cross ya, on suckler bred cows it seldom works.

    Is that just the whole point. It's an average. It just shows the craziness of the majority of sucklers. The statistics do not lie.

    Slava Ukrainii

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    I can’t see the logic of keeping them a third winter. By then they have eaten another autumns grass and have eaten a nice bit of silage over that third winter.

    Whatever about the craziness of the average suckler what about the craziness of keeping freisians pushing 36 months.

    Dont forget the majority of sucklers are on poor ground.

    I have no issue buying a few dairy cross stock on the side when the price is right but I would be targeting a finish around 24 months over 300 kg dw.

  • Registered Users Posts: 18,140 ✭✭✭✭Bass Reeves

    Not every one will end up doing three winters. Friesians are very unforgiving an an underfleshed one will neither weigh or grade.

    The ones I killed this week would have probably killed as P's in September/October and being only 320 DW. 600 kg+ Friesians do not thrive outside after late September. They just did not get enough grass last summer. In 2021 every animal I had was gone by mid October.

    Grass costs about 100/ unit / year. Winter feed costs for a store was sub 80-90c per day this year it about 1.25.

    Friesians never come I to a mart as singles. It's about the optimal profit per animal.

    Selling a 320kg DW P grade for 12-1300 euro or feed it until after Christmas ( in a way because the way processors behave it's a gamble andit immaterial where it's a Friesians or a young bull) or store and kill following June when it's maybe 420+ DW at what is usually the highest price of the year.

    Slava Ukrainii

  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]

    Last year was tough on the grass side. Hopefully this year is better. The current mart prices for yearlings even seem to assume we are in for a good price from now on.

    It’s a tough year for lads buying yearlings. Ideally, there would be more information available for buyers of bullocks including carcass values based on genomic assessments etc.

    I believe you are a good operator in terms of keeping your costs down and that is essential in my opinion in any livestock enterprise where we see such fluctuations in price.

    Irish beef and dairy is in a good position to take advantage of output from grass. We can see a reduction in output on the continent due to higher input costs in systems there.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,608 ✭✭✭mr.stonewall

    Similar to base here, the last of the fresian bullocks, 4 of them went just before Xmas, it's always the tail end of the them that take time. The last batch of cattle were killed in mid August.The margin wasn't there to to cash them in September. Personally I had the decision made in august that these were going to see the shed again for a short period, 30 months just doesn't matter with them, It was just their genetics and there was no point in selling them when the market was falling.

    I'm calf to beef and suckler to beef, so well have a good handle what's in front of you. About half are finished out of the shed and the other half go back to grass, heavy ground forces my hand a bit in finishing more on grass in the summer. Have more heavy stock puts pressure on the system, more fertiliser, ground damage etc. Having a few less of these, let's better quality silage be taken out at ease. Having calves and yearlings, they are just lighter on the ground. I'm even thinking of letting out the yearling heifers to start grazing this weekend, the forecast is on the side. If they have to come back in, so be it

    What is coming fit at the moment for the next 2 months is Dairy cross and Sucklers heifers, the poorer few are going back to grass and will be hung before the end of June. Heifers just come fat quick with a small amount of meal. Letting grass do the heavy lifting for the slower finishing stock is key. I kinda grade out stores at housing into 3 groups, top of the table ( spring finish), mid table( early summer) and the relegation battle ( forget about the 30 months and aim for early autumn / maybe Xmas)

    Getting back to margin, on Sucklers it's a simple thing, bullocks have to be hitting and average of 350kg DW at 24months, this is down to management mainly grazing and genetics. The cow is costing to much to keep to be not producing.

    The beef game is simple ( put as much weight on as quick and cheap as you can.) The only way to measure that is with a scales and the auld calculator. It's the bit in the middle that matters when the cheque comes in