One silage pit is finished and now into the second one, made only 8 weeks earlier. 154 cull hinds have now gone to the works , getting us back to capital stock numbers. Although our base stocking rate is probably still too high. We should be farming at 20% less capital stock and doing them better (and easier on us and the farm). Its been a busy month for our manager Mel, vaccinating ewes and ewe hoggets prior to the ram going out. In addition to a daily ration of cereal silage the ewes are being fed grain for a period of 10 days prior to the rams going out on 28th March. The 2015 AI programme for selected deer commenced with CIDR’s going in for synchronisation on 18 March.
Mid March was spent drilling Greenfeed Oats for Winter Feed. It even tried to rain while we ere drilling but rainfall remained elusive with only 18mm recorded in March. We have now had 5 months without any significant rain, recording only 110mm for the period November – March. By the end of March it is clear there will be a significant feed deficit for the autumn/early winter and a decision is made to purchase 200 medium square bales of meadow hay and barley straw as well as 16 ton of barley. We have already fed out 16 ton of barley harvested ourselves at the end of January. Thankfully we were able to source hay and straw reasonably locally – from Rangiora.