Tips for Novem­ber

NZ Lifestyle Block - - Farming -

When pas­ture is in good sup­ply, prices for stock tend to go up. Rather than buy­ing in more stock, con­sider sell­ing the ones you have for a good profit, and us­ing grass for hay, silage or baleage.

Al­ways think hard about whether you take on ex­tra stock at this time of year. If there is a drought in the next few months, it could be an ex­pen­sive mis­take: the price of sup­ple­ments will go up, and prices for stock may fall as ev­ery­one else needs to sell too.

Any an­i­mal that is get­ting good qual­ity feed and not gain­ing weight needs to be checked for signs of worms, lice, stiff­ness in limbs, anaemia (check the in­side of the eye­lids and gums for pink­ness), de­hy­dra­tion, tem­per­a­ture, swollen limbs, and limp­ing. Talk to your vet.

Have you got a fae­cal egg count mon­i­tor­ing sys­tem in place? This is go­ing to be­come more im­por­tant as drench re­sis­tance builds. Test­ing a rep­re­sen­ta­tive group sam­ple or in­di­vid­ual an­i­mals is cheap, or you can do it your­self with the right equip­ment.

Watch for lame­ness. Two com­mon causes are scald (wet-look­ing, white or pink skin between the toes) or footrot (smelly, black, ooze in cracks or on the hoof). It’s caused by wet grass and/or hu­mid con­di­tions. Trim and clean af­fected hooves, then bathe in a 10% zinc sul­phate so­lu­tion (add zinc sul­phate un­til it stops dis­solv­ing, to give your­self a 10% so­lu­tion). If one an­i­mal has footrot, give all an­i­mals a foot bath. Soak for 20 min­utes, then stand them some­where clean and dry (prefer­ably a con­creted area) un­til the hooves are dry.

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