James Lloyd from Cnewr Estate
On-farm trials have proven the worth of a new branding fluid brought to the market by Nettex this season, providing a long-lasting, reliable management tool for hill farmers.
James Lloyd, from Cnewr Estate in Wales has trialled the product and says, “We go through gallons of marking fluid each year, and Nettex Promark Branding Fluid has been absolutely brilliant from day one. The colours are vibrant and stay true all year.”
Mr Lloyd farms 12,000 acres in the heart of the Brecon Beacons. He runs a flock of 6,000 ewes as well as a herd of 260 cross bred suckler cows, on land that rises to 2,400 feet.
“Our Brecknock Hill Cheviots make up the majority of the flock, but we also have 500 South County Cheviots and 1,000 Brecknock cross South County Cheviots.
“Because we’re running such a large number of sheep across an extensive area, we need a reliable method of marking and branding ewes, rams and lambs to ensure we have clear management and breeding records,” he says.
Mr Lloyd says that each hill has its own ear notch and pitch mark. “This is a system that we’ve relied on for years as we know it works. Whenever we gather the sheep, such as at lambing, weaning or prior to our on-farm sale, we need to know where the animals have come from.”
He adds that colour is also very important. “We use a wide range of colours to mark animals at various stages throughout the year. For example, at tupping we mark ewes and rams in the same colour so we know which ram has run with which ewes. And, we mark ram and ewe lambs in different colours, to help us when grouping animals.
“Having a clear pitch mark allows us to make informed decisions and keep reliable, visual management records to continue to develop the flock’s genetics and overall performance.
“We trialled Promark Branding Fluid last year on a proportion of the flock, but this year we will be using it across the board. The range of colours the fluid is available in is great for us. The colours have lasted, and because of this we can be sure our management records are trustworthy.”
Nia Williams, Nettex technical manager explains, “Mr Lloyd has relied on branding fluid year on year, and was very definitely the right person to trial the product for us.
“The trial has demonstrated how valuable a long-lasting marker fluid is for the management of such a large scale sheep farm. Promark Branding Fluid is a great addition to our existing product range, continuing to meet the needs of farmers such as Mr Lloyd,” she adds.
Nettex Promark Branding Fluid is available in 2.5 litre and 5 litre packs, in the colours orange, blue, red, green and black. For more information visit www.net-tex.co.uk