Scanning cows in County Laois but the farmer was in bed.

March 9, 2011

One  of the features scanning cows for farmers in Ireland is the number of part – time farmers and their requirement for either an early morning or late evening or Saturday call to accommodate them.  Had to visit a farmer in  County Laois who requested an early morning call ( 6 a.m) to scan his  suckler herd before he went to work.  I got up there on time thanks to the new motorway from Fermoy  to Portlaoise.  However, there were no  lights on the yard.  I knew there was something wrong.  I tried to contact him between blowing horns, phoning mobiles, doorbells,  It transpired that he had gone to stay with his uncle and not heard the ‘phone ringing.

Dr.Dan @


DNA analysis to identify the sire of calves born

March 7, 2011

Visited a client outside Ballingarry County Limerick today who presented a herd of dairy cows with 2 stock bulls running with the herd and another stock bull running with the heifers. He interchanged the bulls between the heifers and the cows and in addition ran 2 stock bulls at all times with the dairy herd. In order to certify the sire of the heifer calves born, he plans to use DNA analysis to identify the sire of the heifer calves born. This is a good managerial practice as it avoids the risk of insufficient stock bull power with a herd of cows.

Dr.Dan @

viral infections in heifers, pre-pubertal state in heifers

March 3, 2010

scanned a  batch of 40 heifers  this morning. The client had used a synchorinzation programme and AI’d the heifers with sexed semen.  This group turned out out to have no pregnancies.  The clients involved were putting it down to Sexed Semen but I showed them a number of heifers who were in pre pubertal state and had severe issues with nasal discharges associated with a viral infection.  This maybe part of the problem and I have told them to investigate same.  In cases where  IBR is a problem, fertility will be severly  demised.

swollen navels>dipping navels>calves

February 24, 2010

visited a farm in North Cork today with a 2o% incidence rate of swollen navels in calves that were only 1 week old.  The procedure for dipping navels was incorrect as the complete navel has to be imersed in the iodine solution.  the farm staff were dipping the upper part of the navel  which was inadequate.

Dr Dan Ryan

dispersal sale-cows, holstein

February 15, 2010

A herd of Holstein cows -non registered pedigree -commercial dairy herd -no milk recording were sold last week averaging 1700E for first calvers and 1400E for 3rd calvers. At current milk prices , this price for replacement stock is hard to justify.

dairymaster automatic calf feeder,calves,cows

February 15, 2010

there is a farmer in portlaoise using the automatic calf feeder from Dairymaster. Each feeder feeds up to 32 calves automatically dispensing milk to the calves at set times during the day with a given quantiy per feed which can be automatically stepped up as the calf grows older.  Excellent reordering system and alarm system in place for calves that are not taking their feed.

homeopathy,animal health,lepto,samonella,bvd

February 15, 2010

visited a farm in portlaoise to-day. Homepathy is used  on this farm in conjuction with prevention  for IBR, BVD,Leptospirosis and Salmonella.  It is also used for treatment of foetal membranes.  Major issue regarding homeopathy as there is no research data  supporting the treatments.  The argument is made  on their behalf that the effective treatment cannot be measured.  This is  not a valid explaination as a simple trial invloving treatments would support the use of  same.

dairymaster,moo monitor,heat detection,oestrous cows

February 3, 2010

Working with a herd in the North Of Ireland in County Derry using an accelator meter as part of a heat detection system incorporated into a Moo Monitor.  The client was questioning the sensitivity to pick up heats in his cows.  Of the 140 cows examined the accelator meter detected 92% of heats among cows that had cycled in the previous 3 weeks.  The heats  not detected  were associated with reproductive abnormalities associated with other persistent   oestrous or cystic ovarian disease.

retirement from farming,northern ireland,dairy farming

February 3, 2010

The number of dairy farmers continues to decline in Northern Ireland.  One farmer noted to me that many of  the older farmers are retiring from farming but are allowing their business run down and not buying in replacement stock so that there is a gradual wind-down in the business without a dispersal sale.

infertility problems>cud>acidosis>milk fever

February 3, 2010

A farm in County Down in Northern Ireland with serious infertility problems A high level of  embryonic death among cows presumed pregnant- 25% with evidence of embryonic death. Cows throwing up ‘’cud’’, a serious problem with acidosis. Soil analysis and silage analysis indicated a high level of chlorine and  high calcium,  giving rise to a serious imbalance.  Clinically, cows with 3rd lactation plus all have to be treated to prevent milk fever.