AHDB Food & Farming podcast

306: Outwintering dairy and beef cattle: can it work for you?

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Outwintering has been a popular approach over the last few years to reduce housing and feed costs, particularly for cattle, but is outwintering falling out of fashion?

In this episode Bryony Ennis, Animal Health and Welfare Scientist, is joined by dairy farmer Adam Boley and beef farmer Johnny Haimes to share their experiences with outwintering cattle and discuss the following areas:

  • Is outwintering falling out of fashion? 
  • Benefits and challenges of outwintering cattle
  • Management of outwintering, including infrastructure, feed planning, and environmental considerations
  • Impact of really wet weather 
  • Influence of outwintering on labour/ staff 
We will also hear from Siwan Howatson, Senior Environment Scientist, about the environmental considerations for those thinking about outwintering and how to manage outwintering to protect watercourses and manage soils.

About the speakers
  • Adam Boley is a dairy farmer from Herefordshire with a 600 cow spring calving dairy herd. He has outwintered his cows for the last 12 years, but last year built a shed to house cows instead. All cows used to be outwintered but he now only outwinters around 150 cows. 
  • Johnny Haimes is an AHDB Beef & Lamb strategic farmer from Devon. He has moved from suckler cows to rearing dairy calves and outwinters them all on grass and herbal leys. Find out more about Johnny.
Learn more about outwintering cattle.

Feedback survey: We'd love to know what you think of our podcasts. If you’d like to give your feedback, please complete our short questionnaire, which will help us to improve the podcast on an ongoing basis.
This episode was produced and edited by Kate Smith, Marcomms Executive (Dairy).


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