This year is shaping up to be a year of extremes when it comes to weather. After witnessing such cold temperatures, sleet and snow in March we are now enjoying consistently high temperatures and glorious sunshine. I could happily get used to the latter!

It is amazing how the weather can have such an impact on all aspects of farming, from sheep, beef and dairy cattle right through to arable crops. Our stock is flourishing in the summer sun and improving daily after such a tough start. We have wormed the lambs for the first time for nematodirus and hope this will continue to aid their growth on the fresh grass. The first of them are away, at an average of 77 days, and we're hoping to have a similar number away next week.

Our 24-month-old heifers are calving well too, with very little help or support. We started calving them just under four weeks ago and have 17% left with just 3% requiring assistance. This is a fantastic outcome and only helps to support our decision to allow them the opportunity to calve safely at this age.

Like their more experienced mothers, heifers are given time in individual pens to ensure they bond and milk well before being moved out to good grass pasture. We understand the importance of nutritionally supporting the heifers to ensure they are able to sustain not only the calf but their own condition and strength. As previously mentioned, we feed a mix of Maxammon barley, sugar beet pulp and dark grains which is blended in a Siloking and bagged off.

It's this feed that has played an invaluable role in enabling us to calve our heifers successfully at two years of age. The cows are also well through summer calving, with 50% calved in four weeks, with these calving down to Charolais and Aberdeen Angus bulls. A simple yet great plus point of the Aberdeen Angus breed is the fact it is polled, thereby reducing stress levels for myself and the calf which does not have to be dehorned while tagging.

All our cattle are now happy outside enjoying some much needed heat on their backs, with the only stock kept inside being 40 steers weighing in excess of 500kg. These are being fed a carefully rationed feed mix to enable us to finish them in the next month or two. Those that were lighter when weighed, will hopefully be finished on grass only at 16-18 months.

With the tremendous weather, we are already well underway with silage. We rarely get silage cut before the first local show, which is Angus on Saturday, but the grass has really sprouted with the warmth and enabled us to take the first cut more than a week earlier than last year.

As the sun is out all day with little morning dew or dampness setting in later in the day, we have also enjoyed longer cutting days, which is enabling us to storm through the fields at a great rate of knots.

We will start shearing next week, which I am sure the sheep will be very glad of, making them much more comfortable in this heat and minimising the risk of them going onto their backs to scratch.

Along with all farmers, we are watching the weather forecast very closely and are thrilled to see this good weather appear to continue for the foreseeable future. Fingers crossed for a great few summer months.

* Graeme farms a large family run, upland beef, sheep and arable unit at Shandford, Brechin, where all progeny are finished mostly off grass, with the exception of home-bred replacements.