Recent research into calf rearing has shown that optimising heifer growth rates pre-weaning is vital for efficient heifer rearing and producing a healthy, high yielding dairy cow.
Keeping a record of colostrum management, growth rates, calf illness and calf mortality is therefore essential. The XLVets Calf Tracker initiative has been designed as a monitoring system, which allows recording and bench marking of calf performance from birth to weaning within our practice, but also nationwide.
If you are looking to tackle a problem, or are looking to improve your calf rearing; in order to achieve the highest quality heifers, then Calf Tracker provides an excellent place to start.
We are organising a meeting on 22nd March at 7pm. This will be an ideal time to hear more about the Calf Tracker Initiative in more detail. You could even have the chance of winning a Free Calf Tracker Kit, which includes a Calf Jacket.
What does Calf Tracker Involve?
We will make an appointment for your Vet and our Vet Tech to come out and gather all the background information.
Every fortnight, our Vet Tech, will come out and take samples to measure colostrum intake and record the weight of calves. Between these visits, it is useful if you record birth weights and calf illness, as the more information we gather the better.
We will hold a group meeting every 3 months, so that similar farms can anonymously compare results and look at improvements.
What will happen during our fortnightly visit?
Our Vet Tech will measure the growth rates of your calves. This will be used to calculate Daily Live Weight Gain.
Blood samples will be taken from young calves, to provide evidence on whether the calf has had enough colostrum (we could also check colostrum quality, if you have some available).
All the data is then analysed, to enable us to provide some feedback.
If you are interested in finding our more about the calf tracker service, please talk to our vets or give us a call 01363 772860.