The target gain for weanlings over the winter is 0.6kg of average daily gain. The target meal feeding rate will be dictated by forage quality.
The better the quality of forage, the lower the feeding rate of meals required.
At 75 DMD, feed 1kg/day. At 70 DMD, feed 1.5kg/day. At 65 DMD, feed 2kg/day.
The concentrate specification should be high energy (0.93-0.94UFL) and moderate protein.
The protein level will be driven by silage crude protein, but for most farms, a 16 % CP ration will be required to meet protein requirements for growth.
Don’t forget to include a good quality mineral.
House weanlings according to weight at housing.
Light weanlings will respond best to meal feeding.
Front load meals — that is, feed more meals at the beginning of the winter. For example, if the recommended target is 2kg of meals per day over the winter, then feed 2.5kg for the first half, and reduce this to 1.5kg for the second half of the winter.
Early turnout is as important as meal feeding. Getting weanlings to grass early in the spring will reduce feed costs and improve gain. It will be easier to achieve target weight at breeding in April.
Check that the feeding space, the space allowance in the pen, access to clean water, dosing programme, ventilation are satisfactory.
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