Grass growth rates are back 25% in April and May compared to the five-year average, PastureBase Ireland data shows.

Growth rates for last week were 57kg/ha/day, while they were 73kg/ha/day for the same period last year and 66kg/ha/day for the same period over the last five years.

Significantly lower than normal grass growth rates were recorded in the last weeks of April, where growth was back 33% compared to the five-year average.

According to Teagasc Grass 10 leader John Maher, it has been a difficult year for grassland management, with bad weather reducing the number of grazings and the amount of fertiliser applied.

There are signs of improvement, with Teagasc predicting growth rates in the mid-60s for this week.