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Beef: Feed & Forage

Resources for feeding cattle

Rotational Grazing Vlogs – Adapting the grazing management to stretch grass supply

    Grass growth at 50kg dry matter per hectare per day and farm average cover at 1900 kg dry matter per hectare indicates that grass supply is not ideal…

Read article

Select by an area of interest

Silage Analysis Update 2022

The nutritional value of silage is determined by several factors such as grass variety, cutting date, weather, wilting period etc.  Therefore, silage should be analysed...

Read more >

Improve Your Grassland Productivity With Weed Control

In this video we hear Poppy Frater, Grassland Specialist at SAC Consulting, and Colin Taylor, Taylor Technologies, discuss two weeds most important to established grassland in...

Read more >

Reduce Risk Of Scald In Lambs This Season

Scald is caused by bacteria (Dichelobacter nodosus) in the grass and leads to damage to the soft tissue between the toes of lambs. It can...

Read more >

Grazing Principles for Productive Flocks

In this webinar recorded 26th May, Poppy Frater and Daniel Stout of SAC’s GrazeUp discuss the core principles of effective grazing management to optimise pasture...

Read more >

Grassland Productivity Grazing Management

    In this video we hear from Poppy Frater, Grassland Specialist as SAC Consulting, discussing tips and strategies to make more from grass considering...

Read more >

Hay Instead of Silage?

Farmers have generally moved away from hay in favour of silage over the years to be less dependent on a good spell of weather. If...

Read more >

Ensiling Potatoes with Silage to Add Feed Value to the Pit

High input prices have prompted us to closely look at the cost of feed supply for next winter and one way to bulk up silage...

Read more >

Maximising Performance of Growing and Finishing Cattle

With exceptionally high feed costs this year it is vital that the target weight gain from a specific ration is being achieved. Any drop in...

Read more >

Improving Silage To Reduce Costs

Improving silage quality provides an alternative resource of nutrients to livestock that may have otherwise been supplied in concentrate feed. Ruminants have evolved to eat...

Read more >

Using Potatoes as an Alternative to Barley for Finishing Cattle

Stockfeed potatoes can be used as an alternative to expensive barley and are worth considering for feeding to finishing cattle to spin out home grown...

Read more >

Feeding Pre-Calving Minerals

An important factor in the pre-calving period is to ensure the cow is getting adequate minerals in her diet.  Mineral levels in UK silages are...

Read more >

Transitioning Off Fodder Beet

The importance of transitioning livestock on to fodder beet slowly, to allow the rumen bugs to adapt to the high sugar diet is well documented. ...

Read more >

Fodder beet: From seeding to feeding

During the 2021 growing season, we sited a time laps camera on Robert Andersons fodder beet in Aberdeenshire, this has captured the growth of this...

Read more >

Forage Crop vlog: Michael Shannon Yield Analysis

This vlog from Thankerton Camp shows how the yield analysis of the 3 forage crops was calculated in preparation for the cattle being introduced mid-November....

Read more >

Forage Crop vlog – Introducing Stuart McWhirter

Introducing Stuart McWhirter, Kenmure, Newton Stewart. Stuart gives us a background to his farming enterprise in the South West and how he uses forage crops...

Read more >

Best Practice Procedures For Making Baled Silage

There are a number of important steps during the silage making process which can influence nutritional of the end product, impacting on livestock performance and...

Read more >

Forage Crop vlog – Introducing Robert Anderson

The first of this years farmer vlogs comes from Robert Anderson, Corskellie, who gives us a run through of his families farming enterprises and use...

Read more >

Fermented wholecrop to boost winter forage stocks

Being a late spring, there is little silage left over from last winter and many of this year’s first cuts are reported to be light...

Read more >

Forage Crop Ground Preparation

Good ground preparation of forage crops is a large contributor to their yield potential, with a fine, firm seedbed, with the correct pH and nutrients...

Read more >

Introducing Our Forage Crop Vlogs

Introducing our forage crop vlog series!  We have three fantastic farmers, who have kindly agreed to allow us to follow them and their forage crops...

Read more >

Using Potatoes For Finishing Cattle

Stockfeed potatoes look plentiful and cheap just now compared to cereals and are worth considering for feeding to finishing cattle.

Read more >

Magnesium Supplementation of Suckler Cows – Are You Covered?

As turnout approaches, now is a good time to reassess your mineral supplementation strategy for grass staggers prevention in the suckler herd (also known as hypomagnesaemia or grass tetany).  Whilst access to spring grass...

Read more >

Improving Baled Silage Quality: What’s it Worth?

When buying or selling silage bales, nutritional value is rarely taken into account, but the variation in quality can be huge.  Having an analysis to...

Read more >

Forage Stocktake

Now is a good time to assess silage and straw stocks to ensure that you have enough to see you through to spring turnout.  Take...

Read more >

Keeping Male Calves Entire?

With calving either started or not far away, on many farms, now is the time for breeders to consider whether they castrate their bull calves...

Read more >

The Importance Of Vitamins – Vitamin D

Vitamin D is critical for normal development and growth.  The primary function of vitamin D is to increase blood plasma calcium and phosphorous to a...

Read more >

Wormers And The Soil

I have seen several videos recently telling farmers to reduce their use of wormers or cut them out altogether to reduce their impact on soil...

Read more >

Managing and Reducing Straw Wastage

With straw looking to be relatively scarce coupled with price variance across the regions this guide will help farmers better manage straw supplies and help...

Read more >

Keeping Finishing Cattle Clean this Winter

Ensuring cattle arrive for slaughter in a clean condition is crucial to reduce the risk of contamination within the processing plant and minimise the associated...

Read more >

Livestock Grazing Beet: Feat. Dr Jim Gibbs

The third and final podcast in our fodder beet for livestock series. This podcast focuses on the health of livestock grazing beet and we are...

Read more >

Barnside Farm – Becoming Organic, Rotational Grazing, and Mob Grazing

In this podcast SAC Consultant Malcolm Macdonald caught up with Charley and Andrea Walker from Barnside Farm. They discussed their farming system, why they became...

Read more >

Fodder Beet – A Focus On Beef

Fodder beet as a crop to overwinter livestock, has grown in popularity over Scotland the last number of years. But, unlike a traditional brassica, this...

Read more >

Managing Straw Supplies for the Winter

Malcolm Macdonald speaks to SAC beef consultants Robert Ramsay and Sarah Balfour about managing straw supplies this winter. With straw availability varying across the country...

Read more >

Ruminant Nutrition

Ever wondered what your animal requires and when?  The best way to feed them?  What minerals they need?  If so then this webinar is for...

Read more >

Cows in their natural habitat – wintering on the hill

Giles Henry at Oakwood Mill, Scottish Borders Giles has just moved the cows up to the hill (1100f) . The grass has been rested since...

Read more >

A year at Oakwood mill – How Giles Henry manages his cattle

This video gives an insight into how Giles manages his cattle through the year for low cost and high performance.  

Read more >

Planning Feed Supplies For The Winter

Malcolm Macdonald spoke to nutritionists Karen Stewart and Mary Young along with beef specialist Robert Ramsay about planning feed supplies for the winter. Karen, Mary...

Read more >

Forages and Feeds: Dealing With A Forage Shortage

This video is the sixth in our winter feed planning series covering assessing your forage stocks and their quality, as well as what to do...

Read more >

Forages and Feeds: Assessing The Ration

This video is the fifth in our winter feed planning series covering assessing your forage stocks and their quality, as well as what to do...

Read more >

Forages and Feeds: Formulating Rations

This video is the fourth in our winter feed planning series covering assessing your forage stocks and their quality, as well as what to do...

Read more >

Forages and Feeds: Assessing Your Forage – Part 2

This video is the third in our winter feed planning series covering assessing your forage stocks and their quality, as well as what to do...

Read more >

Forages and Feeds: Assessing Your Forage – Part 1

This video is the second in our winter feed planning series covering assessing your forage stocks and their quality, as well as what to do...

Read more >

Forages and Feeds: Assessing Forage Stocks

This video is the first in our winter feed planning series covering assessing your forage stocks and their quality, as well as what to do...

Read more >

Rotational Grazing: A Discussion

This year, four farmers from across Scotland have been documenting their experience using rotational grazing methods on video. You can follow the whole series on...

Read more >

Alternative Bedding

Bedding livestock on straw is common place on most farms in Scotland but straw is not the only option. 

Read more >

Wet Straw

Recent wet weather in some parts has seen straw in field stacks soaked by rainwater, bales immersed in water and even straw bales washed away...

Read more >

Cause And Prevention Of Mites In Feedstuffs

Grain/feed mites can occasionally cause issues in grain they are not often easy to spot until they are in large numbers and where populations are...

Read more >

Measuring Grass – Is It Worth It?

Is measuring grass necessary for running a beef and sheep farm?  No, but if you want to make the most of your resources it certainly...

Read more >

Rotational Grazing Vlog: Cattle doing well after a wet august at Oakwood Mill

          Although grass is doing well and cattle are thriving (1.35 kg/day liveweight gain), rainfall is starting to increase poaching risk....

Read more >

Rotational Grazing Vlogs – Adapting the grazing management to stretch grass supply

    Grass growth at 50kg dry matter per hectare per day and farm average cover at 1900 kg dry matter per hectare indicates that...

Read more >

Rotational Grazing Vlog: Moving steers through rotationally grazed paddocks and clover after rain

    Giles Henry at Oakwood Mill, Scottish Borders Thankful for June rainfall, Giles shows us the yearling steers during their paddock shifts and gives...

Read more >

Rotational Grazing Vlog: Adapting to slow grass growth and pre-mowing with dairy cows

    The farm has received some much-welcomed rain so is greening up well. William has had to adapt the grazing management quite a lot...

Read more >

Rotational Grazing Vlog: Permanent pasture responding well to Leader-follower rotation

    Cows and Calves follow behind the ewes and lambs at Scholland Farm on Shetland. Increase kg/ha 40%. A top tip for temporary electric...

Read more >

Rotational Grazing Vlog: Leader Follower Grazing

    Leader-follower grazing is where a priority group graze the best grass and the follower group tidy up behind them. In this video Jamie...

Read more >

Rotational Grazing Vlog: Adapting the Grazing platform – a surplus of grass

    William discusses the use of dry cows and taking paddocks out for silage to deal with excess grass.  

Read more >

Rotational Grazing Vlog: Pasture quality at Oakwood Mill

    Giles shows us his year old reseed with steers grazing and he shows what his grass looks like after three rounds of rotational...

Read more >

Rotational Grazing Vlog: Adapting grazing in cooler May conditions on Shetland

    Grass growth on Scholland Farm has been slow due to cool may conditions. Therefore, the ewe and lamb grazing has been adapted and...

Read more >

Rotational Grazing Vlog: An update after some rain

  Forest farm was getting quite dry, in this video, William returns to the heifers following 10 mm of much needed rain.  

Read more >

Opportunities To Control Rushes 

Rushes are a major challenge to beef and sheep producers across the country.  Rushes are an indicator of poor fertility, poor drainage and low soil pH.  However,...

Read more >

Using A Wholecrop Cereal To Top Up Forage Supplies

If you think you may be short of forage for the coming winter cutting and preserving a standing cereal crop to produce wholecrop may be...

Read more >

Nutritional Causes: Focus On Laminitis

Nutritional management has been identified as a key component in the development of laminitis, particularly in rations with a high level of starch resulting in...

Read more >

Handling And Stacking Silage Bales

When making silage bales it worth taking extra care around handling, wrapping and stacking of bales to avoid costly nutrient losses and some harmful moulds...

Read more >

Using Potatoes For Cattle

Stockfeed potatoes look plentiful at the moment and with prices currently around £18-25/t they are definitely worth consideration. Karen Stewart gives a new hints and...

Read more >

Maximising The Power Of Culling As A Management Tool

Culling cattle out the system is a powerful tool, not only to improve herd performance but also reduce the risk of any animal welfare breakdowns...

Read more >

Is Mineral Supplementation Necessary For Cattle At Grass?

The need to supplement growing cattle at grass with minerals is often questioned.  Many farmers do, many do not, and some may bolus to provide...

Read more >

Growing And Finishing Cattle At Grass

Turning cattle out to grass is a welcome break from the winter feeding routine and frees up time for other activities on the farm, it...

Read more >

Getting started with rotational grazing in the dairy herd

Getting Started with Rotation Grazing for the Dairy Herd Rotational grazing involves using small fields sizes, (or paddocks) to move stock frequently to provide a...

Read more >

More in QuickFAS Beef

Select by an area of interest

Silage Analysis Update 2022

The nutritional value of silage is determined by several factors such as grass variety, cutting date, weather, wilting period etc.  Therefore, silage should be analysed...

Read more >

Improve Your Grassland Productivity With Weed Control

In this video we hear Poppy Frater, Grassland Specialist at SAC Consulting, and Colin Taylor, Taylor Technologies, discuss two weeds most important to established grassland in...

Read more >

Reduce Risk Of Scald In Lambs This Season

Scald is caused by bacteria (Dichelobacter nodosus) in the grass and leads to damage to the soft tissue between the toes of lambs. It can...

Read more >

Grazing Principles for Productive Flocks

In this webinar recorded 26th May, Poppy Frater and Daniel Stout of SAC’s GrazeUp discuss the core principles of effective grazing management to optimise pasture...

Read more >

Grassland Productivity Grazing Management

    In this video we hear from Poppy Frater, Grassland Specialist as SAC Consulting, discussing tips and strategies to make more from grass considering...

Read more >

Hay Instead of Silage?

Farmers have generally moved away from hay in favour of silage over the years to be less dependent on a good spell of weather. If...

Read more >

Ensiling Potatoes with Silage to Add Feed Value to the Pit

High input prices have prompted us to closely look at the cost of feed supply for next winter and one way to bulk up silage...

Read more >

Maximising Performance of Growing and Finishing Cattle

With exceptionally high feed costs this year it is vital that the target weight gain from a specific ration is being achieved. Any drop in...

Read more >

Improving Silage To Reduce Costs

Improving silage quality provides an alternative resource of nutrients to livestock that may have otherwise been supplied in concentrate feed. Ruminants have evolved to eat...

Read more >

Using Potatoes as an Alternative to Barley for Finishing Cattle

Stockfeed potatoes can be used as an alternative to expensive barley and are worth considering for feeding to finishing cattle to spin out home grown...

Read more >

Feeding Pre-Calving Minerals

An important factor in the pre-calving period is to ensure the cow is getting adequate minerals in her diet.  Mineral levels in UK silages are...

Read more >

Transitioning Off Fodder Beet

The importance of transitioning livestock on to fodder beet slowly, to allow the rumen bugs to adapt to the high sugar diet is well documented. ...

Read more >

Fodder beet: From seeding to feeding

During the 2021 growing season, we sited a time laps camera on Robert Andersons fodder beet in Aberdeenshire, this has captured the growth of this...

Read more >

Forage Crop vlog: Michael Shannon Yield Analysis

This vlog from Thankerton Camp shows how the yield analysis of the 3 forage crops was calculated in preparation for the cattle being introduced mid-November....

Read more >

Forage Crop vlog – Introducing Stuart McWhirter

Introducing Stuart McWhirter, Kenmure, Newton Stewart. Stuart gives us a background to his farming enterprise in the South West and how he uses forage crops...

Read more >

Best Practice Procedures For Making Baled Silage

There are a number of important steps during the silage making process which can influence nutritional of the end product, impacting on livestock performance and...

Read more >

Forage Crop vlog – Introducing Robert Anderson

The first of this years farmer vlogs comes from Robert Anderson, Corskellie, who gives us a run through of his families farming enterprises and use...

Read more >

Fermented wholecrop to boost winter forage stocks

Being a late spring, there is little silage left over from last winter and many of this year’s first cuts are reported to be light...

Read more >

Forage Crop Ground Preparation

Good ground preparation of forage crops is a large contributor to their yield potential, with a fine, firm seedbed, with the correct pH and nutrients...

Read more >

Introducing Our Forage Crop Vlogs

Introducing our forage crop vlog series!  We have three fantastic farmers, who have kindly agreed to allow us to follow them and their forage crops...

Read more >

Using Potatoes For Finishing Cattle

Stockfeed potatoes look plentiful and cheap just now compared to cereals and are worth considering for feeding to finishing cattle.

Read more >

Magnesium Supplementation of Suckler Cows – Are You Covered?

As turnout approaches, now is a good time to reassess your mineral supplementation strategy for grass staggers prevention in the suckler herd (also known as hypomagnesaemia or grass tetany).  Whilst access to spring grass...

Read more >

Improving Baled Silage Quality: What’s it Worth?

When buying or selling silage bales, nutritional value is rarely taken into account, but the variation in quality can be huge.  Having an analysis to...

Read more >

Forage Stocktake

Now is a good time to assess silage and straw stocks to ensure that you have enough to see you through to spring turnout.  Take...

Read more >

Keeping Male Calves Entire?

With calving either started or not far away, on many farms, now is the time for breeders to consider whether they castrate their bull calves...

Read more >

The Importance Of Vitamins – Vitamin D

Vitamin D is critical for normal development and growth.  The primary function of vitamin D is to increase blood plasma calcium and phosphorous to a...

Read more >

Wormers And The Soil

I have seen several videos recently telling farmers to reduce their use of wormers or cut them out altogether to reduce their impact on soil...

Read more >

Managing and Reducing Straw Wastage

With straw looking to be relatively scarce coupled with price variance across the regions this guide will help farmers better manage straw supplies and help...

Read more >

Keeping Finishing Cattle Clean this Winter

Ensuring cattle arrive for slaughter in a clean condition is crucial to reduce the risk of contamination within the processing plant and minimise the associated...

Read more >

Livestock Grazing Beet: Feat. Dr Jim Gibbs

The third and final podcast in our fodder beet for livestock series. This podcast focuses on the health of livestock grazing beet and we are...

Read more >

Barnside Farm – Becoming Organic, Rotational Grazing, and Mob Grazing

In this podcast SAC Consultant Malcolm Macdonald caught up with Charley and Andrea Walker from Barnside Farm. They discussed their farming system, why they became...

Read more >

Fodder Beet – A Focus On Beef

Fodder beet as a crop to overwinter livestock, has grown in popularity over Scotland the last number of years. But, unlike a traditional brassica, this...

Read more >

Managing Straw Supplies for the Winter

Malcolm Macdonald speaks to SAC beef consultants Robert Ramsay and Sarah Balfour about managing straw supplies this winter. With straw availability varying across the country...

Read more >

Ruminant Nutrition

Ever wondered what your animal requires and when?  The best way to feed them?  What minerals they need?  If so then this webinar is for...

Read more >

Cows in their natural habitat – wintering on the hill

Giles Henry at Oakwood Mill, Scottish Borders Giles has just moved the cows up to the hill (1100f) . The grass has been rested since...

Read more >

A year at Oakwood mill – How Giles Henry manages his cattle

This video gives an insight into how Giles manages his cattle through the year for low cost and high performance.  

Read more >

Planning Feed Supplies For The Winter

Malcolm Macdonald spoke to nutritionists Karen Stewart and Mary Young along with beef specialist Robert Ramsay about planning feed supplies for the winter. Karen, Mary...

Read more >

Forages and Feeds: Dealing With A Forage Shortage

This video is the sixth in our winter feed planning series covering assessing your forage stocks and their quality, as well as what to do...

Read more >

Forages and Feeds: Assessing The Ration

This video is the fifth in our winter feed planning series covering assessing your forage stocks and their quality, as well as what to do...

Read more >

Forages and Feeds: Formulating Rations

This video is the fourth in our winter feed planning series covering assessing your forage stocks and their quality, as well as what to do...

Read more >

Forages and Feeds: Assessing Your Forage – Part 2

This video is the third in our winter feed planning series covering assessing your forage stocks and their quality, as well as what to do...

Read more >

Forages and Feeds: Assessing Your Forage – Part 1

This video is the second in our winter feed planning series covering assessing your forage stocks and their quality, as well as what to do...

Read more >

Forages and Feeds: Assessing Forage Stocks

This video is the first in our winter feed planning series covering assessing your forage stocks and their quality, as well as what to do...

Read more >

Rotational Grazing: A Discussion

This year, four farmers from across Scotland have been documenting their experience using rotational grazing methods on video. You can follow the whole series on...

Read more >

Alternative Bedding

Bedding livestock on straw is common place on most farms in Scotland but straw is not the only option. 

Read more >

Wet Straw

Recent wet weather in some parts has seen straw in field stacks soaked by rainwater, bales immersed in water and even straw bales washed away...

Read more >

Cause And Prevention Of Mites In Feedstuffs

Grain/feed mites can occasionally cause issues in grain they are not often easy to spot until they are in large numbers and where populations are...

Read more >

Measuring Grass – Is It Worth It?

Is measuring grass necessary for running a beef and sheep farm?  No, but if you want to make the most of your resources it certainly...

Read more >

Rotational Grazing Vlog: Cattle doing well after a wet august at Oakwood Mill

          Although grass is doing well and cattle are thriving (1.35 kg/day liveweight gain), rainfall is starting to increase poaching risk....

Read more >

Rotational Grazing Vlogs – Adapting the grazing management to stretch grass supply

    Grass growth at 50kg dry matter per hectare per day and farm average cover at 1900 kg dry matter per hectare indicates that...

Read more >

Rotational Grazing Vlog: Moving steers through rotationally grazed paddocks and clover after rain

    Giles Henry at Oakwood Mill, Scottish Borders Thankful for June rainfall, Giles shows us the yearling steers during their paddock shifts and gives...

Read more >

Rotational Grazing Vlog: Adapting to slow grass growth and pre-mowing with dairy cows

    The farm has received some much-welcomed rain so is greening up well. William has had to adapt the grazing management quite a lot...

Read more >

Rotational Grazing Vlog: Permanent pasture responding well to Leader-follower rotation

    Cows and Calves follow behind the ewes and lambs at Scholland Farm on Shetland. Increase kg/ha 40%. A top tip for temporary electric...

Read more >

Rotational Grazing Vlog: Leader Follower Grazing

    Leader-follower grazing is where a priority group graze the best grass and the follower group tidy up behind them. In this video Jamie...

Read more >

Rotational Grazing Vlog: Adapting the Grazing platform – a surplus of grass

    William discusses the use of dry cows and taking paddocks out for silage to deal with excess grass.  

Read more >

Rotational Grazing Vlog: Pasture quality at Oakwood Mill

    Giles shows us his year old reseed with steers grazing and he shows what his grass looks like after three rounds of rotational...

Read more >

Rotational Grazing Vlog: Adapting grazing in cooler May conditions on Shetland

    Grass growth on Scholland Farm has been slow due to cool may conditions. Therefore, the ewe and lamb grazing has been adapted and...

Read more >

Rotational Grazing Vlog: An update after some rain

  Forest farm was getting quite dry, in this video, William returns to the heifers following 10 mm of much needed rain.  

Read more >

Opportunities To Control Rushes 

Rushes are a major challenge to beef and sheep producers across the country.  Rushes are an indicator of poor fertility, poor drainage and low soil pH.  However,...

Read more >

Using A Wholecrop Cereal To Top Up Forage Supplies

If you think you may be short of forage for the coming winter cutting and preserving a standing cereal crop to produce wholecrop may be...

Read more >

Nutritional Causes: Focus On Laminitis

Nutritional management has been identified as a key component in the development of laminitis, particularly in rations with a high level of starch resulting in...

Read more >

Handling And Stacking Silage Bales

When making silage bales it worth taking extra care around handling, wrapping and stacking of bales to avoid costly nutrient losses and some harmful moulds...

Read more >

Using Potatoes For Cattle

Stockfeed potatoes look plentiful at the moment and with prices currently around £18-25/t they are definitely worth consideration. Karen Stewart gives a new hints and...

Read more >

Maximising The Power Of Culling As A Management Tool

Culling cattle out the system is a powerful tool, not only to improve herd performance but also reduce the risk of any animal welfare breakdowns...

Read more >

Is Mineral Supplementation Necessary For Cattle At Grass?

The need to supplement growing cattle at grass with minerals is often questioned.  Many farmers do, many do not, and some may bolus to provide...

Read more >

Growing And Finishing Cattle At Grass

Turning cattle out to grass is a welcome break from the winter feeding routine and frees up time for other activities on the farm, it...

Read more >

Getting started with rotational grazing in the dairy herd

Getting Started with Rotation Grazing for the Dairy Herd Rotational grazing involves using small fields sizes, (or paddocks) to move stock frequently to provide a...

Read more >

Something else on your mind?