Kerrigan’s calf rearing success with Champion with added Lung Guard, TransGuard and First Fibre from Auctus

The Kerrigans achieve success with calf rearing, feeding the combination of Champion with added Lung Guard, TransGuard and First Fibre from Auctus.

The Kerrigan family farm just outside the village of Donemana, near Strabane in County Tyrone. Calving begins on the 290 cow herd for the Kerrigans in July where they calve down heifers, which is closely followed by their dairy cows into the autumn and winter months. All calves born on the farm are AI bred. They have been rearing calves on Auctus Champion with added Lung Guard calf milk replacer since 2022.

“We made the change to using Champion with added Lung Guard milk replacer after struggling to get calves to thrive. Having good quality, strong replacement heifers are vital to our farm business and we have seen a massive improvement since,” said Bobby.

Champion is Auctus’ bestselling calf milk replacer and, with 23.5% Protein and 20% Oil and Fat, it is an excellent product for both dairy replacement and beef stock.

“We have the added peace of mind that respiratory issues and pneumonia are kept at bay with the option of being able to buy Champion with added Lung Guard, which we have opted for,” Bobby explained.

The Kerrigans are currently milking 290 pedigree Holstein cows through a recently installed GEA 26-a-side swing over milking parlour. Calves born from July through to February are born to dams that have been AI’d with sexed semen. The remainder have been AI’d using either Aberdeen Angus or Belgian Blue straws.  

Improvement within a week

“Before we used Champion milk replacer, we noticed calves being lethargic, not interested in drinking and we were unhappy with their general condition. Within 7 days of feeding Champion, we had an entirely different calf shed! The condition of the calves are super. Calves are content and we have reduced instances of scour and digestive upsets.”

Once a calf is born, it receives 3 litres of Colostrum and is placed into an individual pen. The calf is then fed 6 litres per day of Champion with added Lung Guard plus a 10 gram scoop of Auctus TransGuard for the first 10 days of life split into two feeds, morning and evening.  After this, the calf will then move into a larger pen with 4 other calves and are teat reared on a twice a day feeding system until weaning at 65 days old.

“We noticed an immediate change in our calves as soon as we started to use TransGuard. It gives them the benefit of 10 days colostrum inclusion by feeding one scoop per day and stops any tummy upsets from day one,” explained Bobby.

TransGuard from Auctus contains Bovine colostrum, Prebiotics and Probiotics, specifically formulated to protect the calf’s stomach when transitioning from colostrum to milk replacer or whole milk. By feeding TransGuard, there is an immunoglobulin presence in the abomasum of the calf for this 10 day period and protects the stomach while promoting good bacterial growth with the prebiotics and probiotics.  

Once the calves move into batches of 5, they are fed a calf nut ration and First Fibre, which is available to them at all times. First Fibre is specifically formulated to aid the rumen development by creating the ‘scratch factor’ when ingested, encouraging the papillae in the stomach to mature faster and increase meal intakes from an early age.

Bobby continues, “We used to see calves looking dull; we had scour problems and generally calf rearing was a headache.  The thing I like about Champion is, the calves always come looking to be fed.  They are up on their feet, they’re skipping about and we find it a lot easier to start them on meal and haven’t any issues at all regarding meal intakes.”

All Auctus products are competitively priced and are very much worth considering when making a decision when planning your calf rearing requirements. 

You can contact Auctus by phone on 00353 43 6683200, e-mail [email protected] or contact your local Business Manager:

Lorraine Killen 0044 7342 259225 [email protected] Northern Ireland

Brian Geraghty 00353 87 1175971 [email protected] Donegal, Monaghan and the West of Ireland

Daragh O’Rourke 00353 87 1170803 [email protected] Cavan, South East of Ireland

John Linnane 00353 87 7996247 [email protected] Midlands and South West of Ireland