Calving Interval Too High on Austrian Suckler Farms29 May 2013
AUSTRIA – Beef suckler herd surveys have found the national average for calving intervals is too high, according to the Chamber of Agriculture.
In a national suckler herd review, data collected from farms revealed that only 19 per cent of farms had cows with a calving interval of under 365 days.
The Chamber advises a yearly interval to ensure productivity. One calf per year also allows for simple benchmarking of cattle businesses.
However, a range of 309-596 days interval was observed across the country.
Of these calves, an average of 14 per cent died before maturity. Some holdings had calf mortality rates of 46 per cent.
The Chamber noted that management and hygiene standards were more important to calf success and well-being than the scale of the industry.
Colostrum supply and pen hygiene have been particularly highlighted as key areas which separate good farms from bad.
The study also showed that feed was the primary cost (40 per cent). Animal health and cost of insemination were 6 and 2 per cent respectively.
Currently the price comparison of bulling to artificial insemination favours the prior by €18 a time. (€9, against artificial insemination - €27).
TheCattleSite News Desk