Rural Supplies
21 March 2019

PGG Wrightson Livestock Roundup March - 15 2019

Mark Leishman talks to PGW Livestock GM, Peter Moore in the latest Livestock Update.  This week’s interview focuses on a slight drop in calf and weaner sale prices, two new members of the PGW Livestock Leadership Team and the upcoming activity across the country.

Market Prices 
With the weather having an impact on this year’s prices as farmer’s are thinking about their feed conditioning  , we have seen a price drop per head for the calf and weaner sales. 

New members of the PGW Livestock team
We welcome Matt Macfie from CRV Ambreed into the National Sales Manager role and Jamie Cunninghame into the National Dairy Manger role. You will see Matt and Jamie out and about over the next few weeks meeting clients, at the sales and at the PGW offices around the country. 

Upcoming Activity 
We see the calf and weaner sales continuing across the country with the South Island sales starting within the two weeks. With some dairy sales starting to go through, we are starting to think about the dairy forward contracts and the various go products which are always well received by our clients. 

Livestock Roundup
Rural Diary March
18 March 2019 Gary Bosley

Establishment of long-lasting perennial pastures

The secret to establishing long lasting pastures is straight forward: don’t cut corners. If you follow some easy steps, your chance of success increases.

  1. Break the cycle
    Avoid going from perennial grass straight to another perennial grass. It is always good to break the cycle, ideally with another species. This gives you a chance to spray out and kill perennial weeds, break insect lifecycles and use different chemistry on the new short term crop.

  2. Get the soil nutrition right
    Make use of this time to correct your nutrition status. Grass requires a pH of 5.8 to 6.2, an Olsen P of 20 to 30 and a Potassium of 0.3 to 0.6. Soil test the paddocks and apply maintenance fertiliser, capital fertiliser and lime where needed to aid the successful establishment of your new pasture.

  3. Choose the correct cultivar
    There are many perennial ryegrass cultivars to choose from and they all thrive under different circumstances and management systems. Consider your production system by looking at heading dates, soil fertility and type of stock that will be grazing the paddock.

  4. Insect management
    The other factor related to cultivar choice is managing insect pressure by selecting the appropriate endophyte for the management of those pests. This has an effect on the final cultivar decision, as not all cultivars are available with all types of endophyte. Then, to maximise the success of establishment, use a seed coating that contains an insecticide.

  5. Take time with the seedbed
    Grass and clover are small seed plants with little energy, so a fine firm seedbed should be created to maximise seed and soil contact. Don’t sow when the soil is either too dry or too wet. Rolling both before and after sowing is important and helps firm the soil, which maximises moisture retention and presses in stones and lumps. If you are mixing clover seed with the grass, remember they each require to be planted at different depths for optimum establishment. Grass should be buried below the surface and clover should be placed just below the surface or even on the surface and pressed/rolled onto the soil. 

  6. Seedbed fertiliser
    Unless you are sowing into an extremely fertile paddock, then a seedbed fertiliser should be applied containing at least phosphorus and nitrogen which help with establishment. DAP applied just before or at sowing and incorporated into the soil provides the seedling grass with nutrition to help it establish.

  7. Grazing management
    One of the overriding factors affecting the longevity of a pasture (apart from fertiliser and drought) is grazing management. Do not ever over graze the paddock as this can kill ryegrass plants and create gaps for weed species (both grass and broadleaf) to invade and gradually take over the planted species. This also happens with winter pugging, so should be avoided.

If you are planning on sowing perennial pasture this season, contact your local PGG Wrightson Technical Field Representative to set up your pasture for success. 

Gary Bosley

Rural Diary March
15 March 2019 Andrew Dowling

Staying on target

Internal parasite challenge is likely to be at a seasonal peak in autumn. The major impact is the parasite larvae reducing the appetite of sheep as soon as they are ingested, in turn leading to reduced growth rates. This is a problem when you are targeting minimum body weights and body condition for a successful tupping.

A faecal egg count is a good measure of the impact parasites may be having. Collecting 20 to 40 similar sized samples for a composite egg count can give a better indication of the mob, rather than taking 10 samples for individual counting. If the result indicates a low worm burden, then investigation into other causes of poor tupping are warranted.

The type of worms present have a significant impact. Barber’s pole worm, Trichostrongylus and Telodorsagia can all cause significant production losses, whereas Cooperia has a much lesser affect. When sending samples off to the lab, ask them to identify which worms are present, a procedure that takes about 10 days.

Centramax capsules contain the anthelmintics albendazole and abamectin, plus selenium and cobalt which are suitable for sheep 40 to 80 kg. This makes it a good option for low body condition ewes in a high parasite challenge prior to mating. Regaining body condition will ensure a successful tupping and set the ewe up to better manage the winter.

For more advice on the benefits of Centramax, contact your local PGG Wrightson Technical Field Representative. 

Sponsored by Agritrade

Andrew Dowling

March Livestock Update
11 March 2019

South Island Sheep and Beef Poised for Positive Autumn Market

Generally positive market and climatic conditions have stimulated the South Island’s sheep and beef trade.

PGG Wrightson South Island Livestock Manager Shane Gerken said this season’s ewe and lamb sales have had pleasing results.

“Pasture production early in the summer and excellent meat company schedules kept livestock sales firm through the summer, and this is poised to continue during the autumn.

Enduring confidence in the sheep industry encouraged farmers to replace animals culled last year, and increase flock numbers as they endeavour to address the shortage of good breeding stock. Under solid demand, the best two-tooth ewes sold for more than $300 a head, while the bulk of sales ranged between $250 and $280. Demand for annual draft ewes was also solid, with sales ranging from $150 and $200.  

“Meanwhile, after a brief hiatus, lamb sales have picked up again. As cropping farmers become more active in the market, demand for store lambs has increased,” he said.

Looking towards the South Island’s calf sale season, beginning on 20 and 21 March at Blenheim, Brightwater and Owaka, Shane Gerken expects that market will stay close to the positive levels it traded at last year.

“Similar to last year, as calf sales progress through the rest of the South Island between now and early May, we are looking forward to keen demand, especially for traditionally bred cattle. Calves that are sought after for the Angus and Hereford programmes should be the focus of particular attention.

“Of note, 21 March will mark the final calf sale at the Owaka saleyards, which is the end of an era. Owaka calves have been renowned for their breeding and shifting ability,” he said.

According to Shane, Tasman’s ongoing dry conditions are a concern and the region’s farmers are suffering.

“Without feed and water, de-stocking is a priority for many. Looking towards autumn, and waiting for rain, the medium term forecasts do not hold much hope, unfortunately.

“Although parts of Canterbury have also become dry, recent rainfall has helped alleviate that situation somewhat,” he said.

11 March 2019

PGG Wrightson Livestock Roundup - March 1 2019

Mark Leishman talks to PGW Livestock GM, Peter Moore in the latest Livestock Update.  This week’s interview focuses on the lift in market prices for sheep and cattle, the upcoming march activity and the release of a new online trading platform Bidr.
Market Prices 
Heading into autumn has, there is still a strong demand for both sheep and cattle across the country with a lift in market prices particularly for sheep. 
March Activity 
Through March the weaner cattle fairs are ramping up, starting in Northland then around the country, with a strong market for the traditional beef weaners. 

Bidr Release 
Field days will see the big launch of the new online trading platform Bidr which Peter describes as a virtual sale yard. Controlled auctions are booked for the March, April and May periods, with good interest from both clients and buyers. 
Rural Diary March
11 March 2019 External Supplier

Parasite protection in lactating cows

Many factors can have an impact on cow production: nutrition (quality, quantity and mineral balance), body condition score, foot soundness and disease. Production is negatively impacted if cows are exposed to, or are suffering from, infection or infestation. This is simply due to their immune system using valuable protein and energy to fight off that disease agent, rather than using it for production.

A good example is the larvae of internal roundworm parasites. Every day that cows graze grass, they ingest parasites. If young stock graze the farm or covers are pushed lower, they’re likely to be exposed to a bigger larval challenge. 

You can help protect your cows with Cydectin Pour-On, as it continues to kill incoming Ostertagia ostertagi larvae (the most detrimental parasite in cattle) for up to 35 days. This persistent action pays dividends. In New Zealand trials, Cydectin-treated cows produced on average four kilograms of milk solids (kgMS) per cow more than untreated cows1.

If your cows are currently affected by parasites, don’t wait until dry-off to treat them. Cydectin Pour-On has a nil withholding period for milk, meat and bobby calves, making it a flexible and convenient choice to have in the shed. Choose an effective, proven all-rounder if your cows are in need of parasite treatment this autumn.

Talk to one of your local PGG Wrightson Technical Field Representatives for more information on worming cattle with Cydectin Pour-On.

Supplied by Zoetis

1 Murphy, A. (1998), The effect of treatment with moxidectin, a long acting endectocide, on milk production in lactating dairy cows, Buiatrics World Congress.

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