Parasite Watch, Sheep farming


Things never stay the same for long in farming. With each changing season bringing a different set of challenges and opportunities, you can never be sure that what worked last month, last season or last year will work the next.

Dairy farming

A step by step guide to your drying off technique for optimum results

Drying off cows using the “best practice” technique reduces the risk of post infusion infection as well as ensuring the antibiotic dry cow tube and teat sealant will work as well as possible for optimum results. Follow our step by step guide.

A look at how seasonal block calving can benefit your business

In the UK, 81% of dairy farmers identify their herds as All Year Round (AYR) calving1 despite block calving shown to be more cost beneficial for some enterprises. Evidence shows spring block calving herds can produce milk for lower input costs than an AYR herd, saving around 2.1-2.4 pence per litre (ppL)1

The earlier you can get a cow in calf the more days in milk she will have: How to manage a tight calving block

Block calving can have financial benefits compared to all year round (AYR) calving herds when it is managed correctly. However, for block calving to be economical, 90% of your herd needs to calve in six weeks and your entire herd in 12 weeks.

Get the most from costly feed by maximising cattle health this winter

If ever there was a year when investing in your stock to get the maximum return is going to be important, then 2018/19 is the one. With feed costs up by about 30% on the year, and some farmers already buffer feeding winter forage, there are things you can do to maximise production efficiency.

Pneumonia Vaccination in Dairy Heifer Calves

Protecting your dairy heifer calves from respiratory disease is vital when considering the future productivity of your herd. The foundation of every calf’s lifetime performance begins at birth. A calf that doesn’t grow efficiently in the first few weeks of life may never catch-up.

Parasite Watch, Pig farming, Sheep farming


Farming is centuries old. But that’s no reason to not be excited about its future. Agriculture is an ever-changing industry. It’s necessary to engage with new discoveries, new initiatives and new ideas to stay on top of your business and inspire the farmers of tomorrow.

What is Coccidiosis and how is it affecting your profits?

Coccidiosis is caused by Protozoa. A Protozoa is a very small parasite which is only made of a single cell. There are lots of different types of Protozoa; the one which causes Coccidiosis in cattle is called Eimeria. There are also lots of types of Eimeria and you may find up to 12 different species in cattle. Coccidiosis is most often seen in calves between 1-2 months of life, but it can affect them up to 1 year of age.

Pig farming, Sheep farming

Inspiring the Next Generation of Farmers – Sense of Purpose

We asked influencers in the industry why young people should choose farming as a career, see what they said!

Pig farming, Sheep farming

Inspiring the Next Generation of Farmers – Career Choice

Remember the career advice you received in school? For most young people, the push to make even a vague decision about their future is bewildering.

Top tips to overcoming disease challenges when buying reared dairy-bred calves from multiple sources

Buying in animals from multiple sources can pose a disease risk. For calves originating from herds in a recognised health scheme some important information will be known, but not necessarily the whole picture and therefore all the diseases they may be carrying.


Pneumonia is a disease that every farmer who rears calves will most likely have seen. To understand why you shouldn't wait for an outbreak, read our blog.

How vaccinating to protect respiratory health can help save you money

Although prime cattle prices remain steady and are up around 3-4% on last year, beef farmers should still be looking to maximise output from their system.

How to successfully prevent udder infections after drying off

Recent research has found the link between infection during the dry cow period and subsequent clinical mastitis and elevated somatic cell counts (SCC) in early lactation. We have created a list of 10 steps that will help you make the necessary changes to your dry cow management process.

Parasite Watch, Sheep farming

Flies: annoying your herd, your flock and you!

By the time you notice cattle or sheep being troubled by flies, a population explosion is already taking place! Discover how you can take action to prevent flies impacting your herd, your flock and you!

Monitoring Dairy Heifer Calf Growth Rates

Measuring heifer growth rates is yet another task to squeeze into a day with too few hours in it already, so it is worth the effort?

Will you be vaccinating your cattle against leptospirosis this spring?

It’s easy to forget the potential losses from disease when disease control programmes are working. And that’s when it can be tempting to look at reducing costs by removing the cost of vaccines for diseases you’re no longer seeing. Probably because the vaccines are working! So when you’re deciding whether or not to take that gamble you need to look again at what that gamble is.

Sheep farming


In 2016 we saw the re-emergence of BTV-8 in France, the virus being the same as the one involved in the 2008-2009 outbreak of Bluetongue.

Is Mycoplasma bovis affecting calf health on your farm?

Bovine Respiratory disease (also known as pneumonia) is a major problem of young stock, causing significant loss and compromising animal welfare. Exposure to Mycoplasma bovis increases the risk of calves being treated for respiratory disease, and Mycoplasma bovis is not uncommonly isolated from the lungs of pneumonic calves so it’s important when controlling youngstock respiratory disease that we understand the role of Mycoplasma bovis.

Metritis: forgotten about your fresh cows?

Up to 40% of cows will develop metritis after calving – early identification and treatment will improve future fertility and production.

Which vaccines, when? Choosing a vaccination protocol for BRD

In Part 1 of our blog on winter vaccination we covered the general principles of vaccination, including vaccine choice and correct storage and handling. In Part 2 we will look in more detail at vaccination protocols using the example of vaccination against bovine respiratory disease (BRD).

Selective dry cow therapy: where do I start?

Selective dry cow therapy (SDCT) is a decision made at dry off about whether your cows receive antibiotic dry cow therapy (ADCT) in addition to a teat sealant such as OrbeSeal.

Sheep farming

You’re a busy farmer. That’s why you need this livestock farming website.

Livestock Farming is a site built to help you conquer the challenges of Britain’s toughest business. Read more.

Vaccines: what are they, how do they work, and how should you handle them

In our preparing for winter housing series of blogs we now turn our attention to vaccination. Read more here.

Preparing for winter housing part 2: wind speed and temperature

In our previous blog on preparing for winter housing we looked at ventilation and moisture management. In this follow on blog we’ll discuss in more detail two other key considerations when looking at building function: wind speed (draughts) and temperature.

Preparing for winter housing part 1: are your buildings up to the job?

As summer draws to a close and you start planning for winter housing the question you need to ask is ‘are my buildings fit for purpose’? That’s fit for the purpose of housing cattle, and fit for the age of cattle intended to be housed.

Pre-housing health check: worm and fluke control

We all appreciate the transition into housing is a risky time for first grazing season animals, there are so many things to consider; dietary change, weaning, grouping, respiratory disease, and how to control parasites specifically fluke and worms.

What is the AHDB Healthy Feet Programme?

Lame cows cost money. The Dairy Healthy Feet Programme systematically reduces lameness in herds - for cows that are happier, healthier and more productive.


Drying off cows using the “best practice” technique means that they are at less risk of post infusion infection and that the antibiotic dry cow tube and teat sealant are going to work as well as possible for optimum results.

Sheep farming

Bluetongue threat to the UK

There has been much information on bluetongue in the press of late discussing the risk of a disease incursion into the UK.

Key events for beef and dairy farmers in 2016

Farming events. So many to go to, so little time. We have wandered the www to find the 2016 events that matter most for beef and dairy farmers.

Sheep farming

DIY early warning of fly population explosion

By the time you notice cattle or sheep being troubled by flies, a population explosion is already taking place. However, it's easy and cheap to make some fly traps and then keep an eye on them every few days for an early warning that fly numbers are on the rise.

#springonthefarm - choose your favourite!

For the past few weeks, we’ve been asking farmers from all over the UK to send us their favourite spring photos and show us what #springonthefarm means to them. We’ve had some fantastic entries, and our judging panel has selected a shortlist of five of the very best.

How to improve the value of reared beef calves

As a farmer, you already know what makes your business tick. You don’t need us to tell you that optimising the value of each animal is the key to a successful business. But did you know the importance of the first three months in terms of maximising lifetime performance of your dairy-bred reared calves?

TotalDairy Seminar 2016

If you don’t have tickets yet for the 2016 TotalDairy Seminar, you’re in with the wrong herd. A longstanding and popular event, TotalDairy Seminar routinely attracts renowned farming experts from all over the world.

Parasite Watch, Sheep farming

Clostridia diseases: How to protect your livestock

The sudden death of livestock is every farmers’ worst fear. Not only is it upsetting and stressful, it’s also extremely costly. Yet productive animals are lost to Clostridial diseases on a daily basis. The good news is that it doesn’t have to be that way.

Stop vaccinating in haste, repent at leisure

For any business under financial pressure from declining returns, its good practice to look at the cost base and see where efficiencies can be made. However any such cost stripping needs to take into account the potential impact of that action. For livestock farmers, if the result is a reduction in animal productivity the result could be a net financial loss! Such decisions therefore need to be carefully thought through.

Infographic: How to improve the performance of dairy heifer calves

The performance of your dairy heifers can make all the difference to the profitability of your herd. We have visualised the latest research on keeping heifer calves happy, healthy and as profitable as possible.

Parasite Control – Growing Cattle at Grass

Given the huge variation and local unpredictability of weather seen across the country this winter, it will be hard to predict the affect this may have had on parasite survival rates; however 2016 plays out it would be hard to believe that the challenge will be as low as it was in 2015.

Sheep farming

Welcome to the Livestock Farming blog

Hello and a very warm welcome to the Livestock Farming blog. This is a space for the UK livestock farming community to keep up to date with industry news, trends and insights.

Beef Farming

Dairy Farming

Pig Farming

Sheep Farming

Parasite Watch