Forage Case Study - Dave and Linda Jones
Dave and Linda Jones run 450 Pedigree texel ewes on the Welsh border near Hereford. Orcop Texels are based around quality pedigree breeding, selling high specification ram lambs through breed and private sales. The shearling rams are bred to appeal to sheep producers looking to provide the top grade livestock demanded by the modern marketplace. They turned to Lee Ward, Kings Western Technical Advisor and Frontier Agronomist, to help ensure high quality grass and forage.
Running over 40 hectares of grazing Leys, David and Linda see high output from grass as a major factor in the success of the flock. “High quality grass and forage is paramount in achieving our goal of high growth rates and healthy stock to sell”
Mr Jones explains.” On the advice of Lee, we use Kings Flexicrop. It is a high output quality forage, suited to this part of the world. With its components of high energy grasses and white clover we have seen a marked difference in the daily live weight gain from the sheep running on this type of ley, compared to the grass ley we have previously used.”
“All new leys are preceded by a crop of Maris Kestrel Kale, which is used for valuable winter grazing. This helps to freshen up the ground and gives us an opportunity to clean the ground of grass and perennial weeds prior to planting the new ley in the spring.” Mr Jones added “We burn the older grass ley off with glyphosate in early summer and establish the kale in June/July. The variety stands well and in the likely event of snow in this part of the world, the feed is ‘top of ground’ out of the wet and mud, which only helps the flock health”.
With pressure coming on all aspects of livestock production, it is important to make every detail count. Forage production is the basis for profit and success - working with Kings has ensured this farm business has optimised a valuable opportunity.