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The Principles For Raising Replacement Heifers

- The rearing of replacement heifers is one of the most important aspects of a profitable dairy herd. This ensures the continued effective and high quality growth of your herd. The aim is to let the heifers calve at 24 months of age at approximately 80% of their adult weight. An effective and feasible plan for raising heifers is important.

An effective heifer feeding programme can be divided into the following phases:

• A beginning phase of 0 to 5 months old,
• A young phase of 6 to 8 months old,
• A puberty phase of 9 to 14 months old, and
• A gestation phase of 15 to 24 months old.

Contact: August Lingnau Theme: Cattle

Intensive sheep systems and feeding systems

- In intensive sheep production systems, ewes are most likely synchronised, lambs more frequently than once a year, and probably in lambing pens with multiples. This is done to increase production and profitability per hectare on smaller-becoming farms. These systems have their challenges and increased cost structures and it is important to be aware of the issues surrounding them. The feeding of animals in these systems is much more critical than in an extensive system and must be properly managed to prevent unlimited expenses, whilst the animals need to be fed the correct feed according to their increased needs.

Contact: Jurie Naude Theme: Sheep & Goats

Which licks to use during the growing season?

- After a long dry winter, feeding our animals with high levels of supplements, we tend to sit back and breathe once the growing season arrives. The question is, is it the right approach to limit the supplementation of licks in the growing season, or should we rather focus on lick supplements so that our animals can achieve maximal growth at minimal cost during the dry season?

Contact: Jurie Naude Theme: Cattle

Factors that influence colostrum yield & milk production in sows


As a farmer the main focus points in these trying times are the profitability and sustainability of our farming enterprises. Uncertainty regarding our economy causes us to feel an excessive amount of pressure to perform, financially as well as in production.

Contact: Francois Coetzee Theme: Pigs

Wings of progress – the importance of ostrich breeder nutrition

- It is known that the rearing of ostrich chicks is a specialised field and that mortalities can be very high among chicks from hatching to 2 months old. In order to breed healthier “tougher” chicks one needs, in the first instance, to ensure that breeders are healthy. The state of health of the breeding birds ultimately ensures the health and well-being of the hatched chicks. As far as ostrich chicks are concerned it is better to act proactively as it is far better to hatch healthy chicks rather than to try to “doctor” poor chicks to a healthy state.

Contact: Danie Carstens Theme: Poultry

Safe feed for safe food

- Every role player in the food chain has a part to play to ensure that the products they produce for consumption, whether it is for human or animal consumption, are safe to be on the market. This is not only to ensure business integrity but also to ensure a business’ ethical responsibility to its client base. Currently, the consumer expects that food or feed which is available for sale is safe to be consumed

Contact: Sharlene Moodley Theme: General

Grass silage Part 2



Contact: Richard Baxter Theme: Cattle

Grass silage Part 3


Making grass silage while the sun shines

Contact: Richard Baxter Theme: Cattle

Grass silage Part 4


Fermentation & storage in grass silage

Contact: Richard Baxter Theme: Cattle

Feeding the modern laying hen

- During the past 25 years modern layer breeds have been changing through genetic selection and improvement with the main goal being to improve the efficiency of production. They have been very successful in achieving this. If we use figures for the Hy-Line Brown the extent of these improvements can be seen in the table below.

Contact: Michel Bradford Theme: Poultry