This was the second meeting of the Aberdeenshire Soil & Nutrient Network Farm at Auchlossan and there was a lot to discuss.
Host farmer Robert opened the event by giving the group an update on what has been happening on the farm since the first Nutrient Network meeting in August 2018. Looking forward, Robert gave an insight into his planned crop rotation for the 2019 season, and like everyone, he’s now awaiting suitable weather and ground conditions to get it all started.
Kincraigie’s farm vet gave a presentation on the recent live liver biopsies which has taken place on the farm since the first meeting. He discussed the results in detail, highlighting some problems and suggested potential treatments whilst comparing costs and effectiveness, as well as explaining how the deficiencies can be traced to grassland soils.
Duncan Warnock, Kincraigie’s agronomist, told everyone about the forthcoming trial using Calciprill, which will be applied at the time of sowing. Duncan explained the idea behind the trial is that the placement of the lime will allow for the release of available nutrients around the seed at the point of germination. The group had the opportunity to discuss their own experiences and the theory behind the proposed trial.
Kirsten Williams, from SAC Consulting, presented the benefits of growing alternative fodder crops, focusing on forage beet. She compared the crop in terms of costs and nutritional values against conventional livestock feeds and urged farmers to give consideration to such crops.
Kincraigie is one of 12 Soil & Nutrient Network host farms for the 2018/19 period. Find out more about what the other Soil & Nutrient Networks have been discussing from by reading the meeting notes on our webpage, where you can also download the Case Study for any of the farms, and listen or watch podcasts and videos from some of the host farms.
- SAC TN572 Trace element deficiencies in beef cattle
- Trace elements are minerals that in small quantities are essential for the normal health and function of animals.
- Topics: Soils
- TN694 – Alternative Forages for Sheep: Fodder Beet
- Fodder beet is one of the highest yielding forage crops grown in Scotland with root and top yields of 65-90 tonnes/hectare (26-36t/acre). Dry matter content varies from 15-22% therefore dry matter yield can be substantial. The crop is high quality forage with good palatability due to high sugar content
- Topics: Livestock
- Practical Guide: Alternative Forages for Ewes
- This practical guide looks at reducing ewe feed costs while aiding rotational benefits and animal performance.
- Topics: Climate Change
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