Peter and Sheila Cox’s experience with AHV
Meet Peter and Sheila Cox, the duo behind Mearfield Farm in the sunny South East of Cornwall. Alongside Peter’s parents, they manage a herd of approximately 150 cows, robotic milking and engaging in year-round calving.
Through dedicated investment in herd genetics, they’ve cultivated a high-yield, high-quality cow that currently ranks number one in Cornwall for combined fats and proteins on the NMR list.
Exploring the AHV advantage
Peter and Sheila began their partnership with AHV in the spring 2023 when they crossed paths with AHV at the Dairy Tech event.
“We were looking for different products that we could use for our young stock to help with the immunity gap. So we are using some of the products from the Calf Programme and we’re finding great results.”
The AHV protocol for calves
Sheila describes how she uses the AHV Calf Rearing protocol: “Once our new calves have been fed for a few days with its mum, we then move our calves straight onto milk powder and introduce the Calf Start Powder for the first two weeks. After that, she’s onto the Booster Powder. We then move the calves onto an automatic feeder which is made into a bulk feed and supplemented with Booster Powder. Reco Paste is used, not very often but if we have any digestive upsets.
Peter Cox continues “We’ve seen good live weight gains right through to weaning and a continuous growth plane right through from birth up to weaning when they come off the AHV products.“
One of the most significant benefits they’ve noted is the absence of a post-weaning dip, a challenge they previously faced. With AHV products, their calves maintain a consistent growth trajectory even after weaning at approximately nine weeks.
“We found that when the calves finish weaning at around 9 weeks, we don’t find any post weaning dip which we used to find quite noticeably, they just carry on the same plane of growth.”
More saleable milk in the tank with AHV
Peter and Sheila have worked closely with AHV Advisor Ben to analyse records and effectively target specific animals with udder health issues. This precise approach allows for more saleable milk in the tank and increased farm profitability.
“With Ben’s advice looking at the national records and uniform files, this has allowed us to target specific animals with udder health issues. This allows us to put more saleable milk into the tank and giving us more profit on the farm.”
“With continued visits whenever required and Ben is always on the end of the phone whatever time of day or day of the week.”
Supporting cows post calving
Their AHV protocol extends to their cows. Beginning during the dry period, they administer AHV Booster Tablet, to all cows approximately two weeks before calving. This smooth transition minimises the risk of negative energy balance post-calving. For cows with higher uterine health risk, such as those expecting twins or in later lactation stages, StartLac Paste and a Metri Tablet come into play.
These products promote uterine health and hasten their return to open periods, reducing the number of open days post-calving and the need for replacements.
Sustainable solutions for herd health and longevity
The Cox family’s journey with AHV exemplifies how innovative products and a proactive approach can improve herd health and profitability while aligning with sustainable natural methods.
Peter concludes “It(AHV) gives us the added bonus of allowing us to use a product range that in modern day milk production, a lot of our milk buyers are looking at alternatives to animal health and this really ticks that box.”
Products mentioned by Peter and Sheila Cox
Milk Start Tablet
Get in touch!
Would you like to be visited by an advisor to discuss the health challenges on your farm together? Our AHV Specialist will be happy to visit you to jointly assess the health of your cows and come up with appropriate cow-specific advice.
EN – Get in touch
"*" indicates required fields