Today marks the 39th calendar day since we started harvesting silage for our cows back in late August, a time period during which we've been able to chop during parts of 31 days. Quite frankly, I'm ready to start doing something else! But if weather and luck will fall in our favor, a full day today and again on Monday should should see our summer crop taken care off. From there we'll be moving right in to planting some of our cool-season grazing/silage crops. (12:30pm update: luck didn't fall in our favor...might finish Tuesday)
Meanwhile, the dairy side of the farm just keeps on keeping on. We currently have 155 cows in the active milking herd after "drying off" 23 pregnant cows. Milder weather has led to a decrease in heat stress and an increase in their appetite, so we're starting to see a slow but steady improvement in their milk production. The cows' production should jump even more as we soon begin to incorporate the new silage into their feed ration.
While we have been busy in the field and in the milking barn, Congress has been sitting on their thumbs...or at least when it comes to farm policy. The House of Representative's failure to take action on a new Farm Bill with updated dairy policy is bad enough, but their refusal to even extend current policy left dairy farm families like mine operating without a safety net when the 2008 Farm Bill expired on September 30. They say the matter will be addressed in November after the next elections, but only time will tell.
And with that, I shall let you get on with your day as it is about time for me to get the silage chopper rolling. I hope you all have a great Friday and a "dairy" good weekend!