Coton Wood Farm

Name:
Tony Ball
Location:
Derbyshire
Farm sectors:
Dairy
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About Coton Wood Farm

  • Strategic Dairy Farm since Sept 2018
  • All year round calving herd of 500 Holsteins
  • Averaging 9500 Litres per cow per year
  • 750 Acre farm
  • 8 Lely Robots
  • Grazing lows, cut and carry and TMR to highs

Follow our journey if you are interested in:

  • Improving your transition - Increasing dry cow intakes and perfecting the ration
  • Calf and youngstock management
  • Developing the management of large herds using robotic milking - Honing the robotic system
  • Making the most of forage - Gaining an extra 1000 Litres from forage
  • Increasing our average litres per cow - achieving 10,000 litres per cow per year

Overview

Brothers Michael and Tony Ball farm in partnership, running a 500-strong herd plus followers across three sites and operating an all-year-round calving system. Five years ago, a major investment was made into robots to increase cow numbers from 200 to 500 with the intention of producing milk in the most efficient way possible with an emphasis on cow comfort and welfare.

Our farm

Based in Derbyshire the Balls currently produce 9,500 litres per cow per year on their 750-acre farm and are looking to optimise their system to reach 10,000 litres. They have a great team around them consisting of 4 full-time members of staff and 1 part-time.

Our herd

The herd is currently made up of 500 All Year Round Holsteins averaging 9500 Litres at 3.88% fat and 3.35% protein through 8 Lely Robots. They run three groups, fresh cow, high yielders and low yielders. The low yielders graze from April through to October with the highs on a mix of cut and carry and TMR.

All replacements are home reared, calving in at an average of 25 months at an 18% replacement rate.

Our journey

The Balls are exploring every factor to hone the robotic dairying system to efficiently and profitably produce milk, paying key attention to enhancing the health and welfare of the herd to directly improve the profitably of the business. By refining the management of the transition period, revising the nutrition and use/utilisation of forage within the diets and paying more attention to the monitoring and husbandry of youngstock, gains can be made to achieve their goals.

Our key performance figures

Coton Wood openly share their KPIs so you can see how they perform against a number or technical and financial measures.

Past meetings and updates

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Tony Ball

Tony Ball

"Everyone that goes on a farm visit learns something. You get a lot of information from talking to other farmers, this is how we have gained a lot of our knowledge. "

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