Roy McCrea farms with his two sons, Richard and Mark in Tree Tops Farm. The farm is located in picturesque Claudy in Co. Derry, Northern Ireland. Tree Tops Farm is a dairy enterprise which milks 700 cows. The cows are very high performing, with milk yields of 9000kg, and the farm supplies Stathroy Dairies.
Meet the Anderson family – father Bertie and brothers’ Mark and Philip. They farm in Richhill, County Armagh in Northern Ireland. There is a 350 dairy cow herd on the farm, with Holstein cows that provide an annual milk yield of 8,500kg per cow. The farm supplies Dale Farm Dairies so the herd needs to be in peak condition to fulfil this demand.
The Anderson brothers spoke to us about their herd and CoseIcure boluses.
Whether your main enterprise is beef or dairy, it is a well-documented fact that ensuring the optimum trace element status in your herd is critical to optimise productivity and to promote fertility. While the importance of ensuring optimum trace element levels is widely understood, many farmers are unaware that peaks and troughs of supplementation can have a negative impact on fertility.
One such farmer was Richard Long. Richard kindly spoke to us about his experience with Trace Element supplementation and the CoseIcure range.
The CoseIcure soluble glass boluses supply the same levels of ionic Copper, Cobalt, Selenium and Iodine every single day for up to six months. These trace elements can play a vital role in fertility and health. Also in the range is the Cosecure Cattle bolus, which is the only registered LM bolus in Ireland, and which provides Copper, Cobalt and Selenium. The CoseIcure and Cosecure range is enjoying rapid growth in Ireland. It is being increasingly specified by beef and dairy farmers, as well as vets, who are looking for a high quality bolus that provides a solid return on investment.
One such farmer is Paul McCullagh, who farms in Drumcondrath, Navan, Co. Meath. He has a 280 dairy cow herd that consists of 70% Holstein and 30% Jersey crosses. He supplies milk to Glanbia and Lakeland Dairies so his dairy cows need to be in peak condition to fulfil this demand.
We spoke to Paul to find out what difference the boluses made to his animals.
The importance of overall herd health cannot be overstated. Health impacts on a great many aspects of the dairy cow, from fertility to food absorption to milk quality. There are so many factors that can influence the health of a dairy cow, one of these being trace elements. The most important trace elements are Copper, Cobalt, Selenium and Iodine. Each of these plays a vital role in helping the dairy cow maintain a healthy and fertile profile. A deficiency in any of the aforementioned elements can lead to problems with immunity, fertility, food absorption to name a few. Thus investigating whether a trace element deficiency exists in your herd is worth undertaking.
Ruminants can suffer from a wide array of trace element deficiencies. However the most common are related to copper, cobalt, iodine and selenium. Sheep that are lacking in these essential trace elements can fail to thrive, have poor overall health and encounter fertility problems. However, once these deficiencies have been diagnosed, correct supplementation is necessary for the flock.
There are many factors that contribute to ewe performance. One of these factors can present itself in the form of a trace element deficiency. This type of deficiency can have a serious impact on ewe fertility and overall health. One farmer that found herself with the dilemma was Jemma McHugh.
Malcom and Andrew McLean operate Relough Holsteins – a top pedigree herd in Northern Ireland. They have 290 cows in their award-winning herd with a milk yield of 10,000. Annually, they sell their prize-winning bulls and heifers.
Click here to learn more about this herd’s experience with CoseIcure
“Last winter, I found my dairy cows were having calving problems. These problems presented themselves in the form of retained placentas and dystocia. I was at a loss as to why my cows were having so much trouble calving down.“
“It was suggested to me that such problems may be linked to trace element deficiency. My vet investigated this further and found that the cows were lacking the essential trace elements of Copper, Cobalt, Selenium and Iodine. A continuous supply of these elements is vital for the health and fertility for the dairy cow. I was recommended CoseIcure boluses as they continuously supply exactly the same level of the trace elements for up to six months. So I did not have to worry about peaks and toughs in supplementation.”
Click here to learn more about Eamon Rice’s experience
Multiple complex factors can contribute to the health and fertility of sheep and one of these factors can be the animal’s trace element levels. Too much of certain trace elements can prove toxic, while too little can lead to issues such as impaired reproductive health, poor growth rates and poor general health. The latter was a problem for Mr Gordon Crawford; a farmer from Ballymena, County Antrim. Along with his sons, Ben and Jack, Mr Crawford breeds pedigree Scottish Lanark Blackface sheep. Their flock consists of 95 ewes plus replacements. As a pedigree flock, about 30 sheep are artificially inseminated each year.
Click here to read more about Gordon Crawford’s experience
At this time of year it’s usual for farmers to start thinking about the measures they have in place to support the ongoing health and productivity of animals, and an assessment of your herds’ nutritional status is an important activity to undertake. Where a need for trace element supplementation is identified by your veterinarian, animal health advisor or nutritionist, they will be able to recommend the best course of action for your farm’s needs.
In the case of farmer Frankie Owens, a farmer from Brackey, Sixmilecross in County Tyrone, his veterinarian advised that he use CoseIcure Cattle boluses and he has been extremely pleased with the results.
Click here to read more about Frankie Owens’ experience
The Coseicure soluble glass boluses supply the same levels of ionic copper, cobalt, selenium and iodine every single day for up to 6 months. These trace elements can play a vital role in fertility and health. Also in the range is the Cosecure Cattle bolus, which is the only registered LM bolus in Ireland, and which provides copper, cobalt and selenium.
The CoseIcure and Cosecure range is enjoying rapid growth in Ireland; and is being increasingly specified by beef, dairy and sheep farmers, as well as vets, who are looking for a high quality bolus that provides a solid return on investment.
One such farmer is Michael McManus click here to learn what difference the boluses made to his animals.
The CoseIcure soluble glass boluses supply the same levels of ionic copper, cobalt, selenium and iodine every single day for up to 6 months. These trace elements can play a vital role in fertility and health.
The CoseIcure range is enjoying rapid growth in Ireland; and is being increasingly specified by farmers, vets and merchants, who are looking for a high quality bolus that provides a solid return on investment.
One such farmer is Aiden Leddy click here to learn about the difference that CoseIcure cattle boluses have made on his farm.
Mr John Carson of Allaturk Road, Collone, Armagh tells us about the exceptional, quantifiable, improvements to health and fertility that his herd experienced after they started using Bimeda’s CoseIcure trace element boluses.
John has a 150 autumn-calving herd with an average yield of 8300 litres. John’s feeding system consists of a TMR ration of silage and straights during autumn and winter. During the summer months, a zero grazing and TMR ration is in place. His calving period operates during the autumn.Mr John Carson of Allaturk Road, Collone, Armagh
For the full interview with Wayne, click here.
Wayne Underhill, of Harley Thorn Farm in Beech, Stoke on Trent has 1200 New Zealand Romneys on HLS (High Level Stewardship) Land, which is deficient in copper and many other trace elements. Prior to farming in Beech, Wayne spent 10 years as a shearer in New Zealand.
Five years ago Wayne spoke to Kate Phillips from ADAS about the best approach to take addressing the trace element deficiencies that he felt were affecting the health and fertility of his flock. Kate recommended the Cosecure Sheep Boluses; stating that she found them superior to other boluses. They deliver the same levels of copper, cobalt and selenium every single day for up 8 months, at levels compatible with the animal’s needs, so the farmer knows exactly what his sheep are receiving.Wayne Underhill of Harley Thorn Farm, Beech, Stoke on Trent
For the full interview with Wayne, click here.
Stephen first started using CoseIcure boluses on his Holstein heifers six years ago, on the recommendation of his vet. Stephen commented; ‘around six years ago I approached my vet to discuss the large number of still born calves on my farm. Through blood and forage analysis he identified that iodine deficiency was a major contributor to the problem, and recommended CoseIcure soluble glass boluses to tackle this. The boluses deliver iodine, cobalt, selenium and copper to the animals, at levels that are compatible with their daily requirements, and they last for up to 5 months. Since using the boluses, I have experienced a dramatically reduced mortality rate in calves, and I am happy to recommend these quality boluses to any farmer experiencing deficiency issues’.Stephen Moore, Byley Hill Farm, Middlewich
Emily, a veterinary nurse, and her husband run a flock of pedigree Shetland and pedigree Hebridean sheep on hill pasture in central Scotland. Emily credits Cosecure Lamb Boluses with addressing her lambs’ cobalt deficiency, and leading to improved growth rates and wool quality.
Emily told us, ‘This land is historically deficient in selenium and cobalt. To ensure that our lambs thrive we use the Cosecure Lamb Bolus. As sheep cannot store cobalt in their body, we were determined to find a product which is proven to provide a constant supply of cobalt into the rumen of our growing lambs every day. After researching the different boluses available we discovered that the cobalt in Cosecure lamb is different to every other bolus because it is ionic; meaning it more available to the rumen microbes. Since using Cosecure the lamb growth rates have improved and their wool quality is outstanding.‘Emily Wallace, Scotland
John and Patrick Conway of Draperstown, Co Derry have been farming for over 20 years, and manage a mixed beef and sheep farm, with several hundred animals. Both their sheep and cattle were suffering with poor conception rates, poor coat/fleece quality and ill thrift, and they suspected that there was a trace element problem at the heart of the issue. After seeing no positive results with other nutritional supplements, their vet suggested that they take a more scientific approach and recommended CoseIcure boluses. John & Patrick were extremely impressed but the results, which saw an improvement in conception rates, productivity and general health.John and Patrick Conway of Draperstown, Co Derry
For the full interview with John and Patrick, click here.
John Close, a suckler beef herd farmer from Coxhorne Farm, Charlton Kings, Cheltenham, spoke to us about his experiences with the Cosecure boluses. John credits Cosecure with increasing his herd’s performance and productivity and improving the utilisation of ration inputs. John also feels that the boluses led to an improvement in the immune system of the cows and the health of his calves. Furthermore, John credits the Cosecure bolus with improving herd fertility and yield. John has tried other nutritional supplements to address his herd’s issues, but none were able to rectify the underlying trace element problems which were resulting in poor fertility, health, growth rates and productivity. Here he talks to us about his experience.John Close, Coxhorne Farm
To read the full interview with John, click here.
Ned O’Keefe, a Kilkenny sheep farmer and sheep dog trial specialist from Mullinavat has had an enjoyed great results with both his sheep and lambs, since switching to the COSECURE bolus range.
Ned uses COSECURE lamb boluses on his lambs and their weight gains are substantially higher than when using other poorer quality alternative boluses. He also used sheep boluses pre-tupping, and while his sheep: lamb ratio has never been better, it is the healthiness of the lambs that is the biggest benefit for him.
Ned commented “I have never had such hardy lambs in the spring. The sheep all lambed very healthy and I lost no lambs to disease or weakness this spring. Their growth rates from birth have been fantastic. I put this down to the Bimeda Cosecure boluses and I encourage all famers with trace element issues to use the Cosecure range of soluble glass boluses as part of their flock health plan to optimise health, fertility, growth rates and profitability.”Ned O’Keefe, Co Kilkenny
Numerous vets are also recommending the COSEICURE bolus to their clients. One such Vet is Pat Noonan of O’Brien & Noonan Veterinary Clinic in Fermoy, Ireland who commented, ‘In recent years I have switched many farmers successfully onto soluble glass boluses which contain ionic copper. Ionic copper is rumen available and the particular formulation ensures continuous rumen available ionic copper to cows and excellent results for my clients, as well as a continuous supply of selenium, iodine and cobalt’Pat Noonan, O’Brien & Noonan Veterinary Clinic, Fermoy Co Cork
We have found that after a farmer uses COSEICURE for the first time, they never look back.
John O’Donovan of Araglen, Fermoy Co Cork, Ireland, is an example of one such farmer. John commented; “I had huge problems with retained cleanings in my herd before using CoseIcure boluses. Since being recommended CoseIcure by my vet I have had no cases of retained cleaning and the herd fertility is massively improved. I put these improvements down to CoseIcure boluses”John O’Donovan Araglen, Fermoy Co Cork
James Martin is a an award winning farmer from Northern Ireland, who was named winner at this year’s prestigious Balmoral event. He uses the COSEICURE Cattle boluses annually on his herd and has been extremely happy with the results.
James commented; ‘ I use CoseIcure Cattle Boluses every year without fail on my premier Belgium Blues and have had great results. I had used other boluses in the past but they did not live up to my expectations. The CoseIcure boluses have not only addressed mineral deficiencies in the herd, but I have also seen a marked improvement in weight gain, thrive and herd fertility. I find them extremely convenient to use, as a single application provides a steady supply of cobalt, selenium iodine and copper over the entire grazing season. Increased weight gain gives me a competitive edge; allowing me to secure top market prices and the improved condition and healthy coat which results from their use, was instrumental in my win at this year’s balmoral event.James Martin Newtownards, Co Down
The COSECURE and Zincosel cattle and sheep boluses perform very well on my clients’ farms.
In the cattle this has become very mainly at calving time. I have observed that cattle which use the Cosecure range often calve down faster. The resulting calf is up and sucking very quickly. The dam then cleanses within 24 hours and there is a reduced incidence of endometritis at 21 days post calving.
In the sheep the lambs which have benefitted from the product have a better live weight gain, meaning they are sold earlier. The ewes have a better pregnancy rate compared to those which have not had the product.
I also very much appreciate the technical support we get from the company. They display a very responsible attitude to the recommendation of boluses on farms and do not recommend the products unless a need for supplementation has been shown. This truly independent advice is very rare in a large company.Oli Hodgkinson BVSc, Cert. SH&P, MRCVS, partner at Trefaldwyn Vets in Montgomery, Powys, UK.
I have been using COSECURE boluses on my hill ewes for the last 7 years and I am very happy with the results, especially as my hill ewes receive no supplementary feeding.Iain MacKay, Torloisk Farm