Chops the straw shorter and more consistently than using the mixer wagon

Chops the straw shorter and more consistently than using the mixer wagon

Tomahawk 8150 Dual Chop

The Tomahawk Dual Chop is able to either chop straw short or spread it long, controlled at the touch of a button from a control desk located in the tractor cab.

6 months later we caught up with Philip to find out how he is getting on with the machine.

Philip farms 300 acres of high ground just North East of Newry, Northern Ireland, overlooking scenic Co. Down. 

In partnership with his father on the 4th generation family farm he runs a herd of 100 limousin cross suckler cows,175 beef cattle and 150 - 200 ewes with 60 acres set aside to cereals.

Stock is housed in sheds for around 6 to 7 months of the year on concrete slats, standard practise in the area, and fed a ration containing clamp silage, crimped grain and straw using a paddle mixer wagon.

So how has Philip made use of the machine?

For Bedding

Straw is normally quite expensive so bedding with straw is unusual in the area, as most housing is all slat based. However straw is used for bedding in sheep housing, calving pens and creep areas. Philip has been experimenting with using a layer of chopped straw in the creep areas every few days, as he finds any straw carried into the slat area passes through the slats with ease which the dual chop can produce with the blades in the short chop position

For Feeding

Philip adds around ten 4’ round bales of straw to the suckler diet each week. This straw has traditionally been chopped in the mixer wagon, however Philip says ‘this takes a long time to chop up the bale and can over process the other materials in the mixer’. The Dual Chop, again in short chop mode,  has been used to chop 5 bales, 2 times a week which is faster and chops the straw shorter and more consistently than using the wagon.

Philip will resume using the machine when the livestock returns to the sheds in Autumn.