Early spring is a mixed blessing for farmers

Want to read more?

We value our content  and access to our full site is  only available on subscription. Your subscription entitles you to 7-day-a-week access to our website, plus a full digital copy of that week’s paper to read on your pc/mac or mobile device In addition your subscription includes access to digital archive copies from 2006 onwards

Already a subscriber?

 

Subscribe Now

Scotland has surprised us this year with temperatures already rising close to 20C in some parts of the country.

Butterflies and bees have taken to the skies, and flowers not usually blooming until late April are being spotted all across the UK.

So what does this mean for Scottish farmers?

Warmer soil, quicker grass growth and healthier livestock: an early spring could be a Scottish farmer’s dream come true.

George Gauley, general adviser at SAC Consulting, refers to the early spring as a ‘Catch-22’. As with most things in life, too much sun will be detrimental to farmers’ soil.

With February out of the way, farmers are soon able to begin calving and lambing season – a vital source of income and production for many Scottish farmers this year, as Scotland’s beef industry accumulated £657 million in 2015.

Mr Gauley further advises that farmers should not be ‘tempted to overfeed, instead build up the ewes’ condition throughout the year’.

The importance of prioritising and patience when kicking off the lambing process can make or break a farm’s success.

With farming income fallen by £57 million, this year’s produce is crucial in farm survival.

The latest tractor technology has been released by companies such as McCormick, Zetor and JCB, all debuted in the Farming Scotland Magazine (January-February issue).

KUHN Farm Machinery recently launched a new range of optional accessories that promise to enhance their existing prolanders, cultimers and optimer cultivators.

Pöttinger, farming’s affordable route to a high quality harvest, has also introduced a new line of TERRASEM Fertiliser mulch seed drills, ideal machinery to start off this farming season.

However, this year, farmers are being encouraged to consider renewable farming techniques. More than 1,500 accounts of farming pollution have been documented over the past decade, and the effects these have had on our eco-system are extremely damaging.

For any farmers seeking further advice, please contact SAC Consulting at
www.sruc.ac.uk.