The National dairy cow population is continually increasing, despite challenging conditions in recent years, namely the fodder crisis and drought of 2018.
Total dairy cow numbers for 2019 (as of 1st July) stand at 1,520,890, breaking the 1.5 million barrier for the first time since records began. This figure rose 1.6% from 1,496,232 in 2018. The below table shows the national dairy cow population figures broken down into county.
Cork remains home to the largest proportion of Irelands’ dairy herd with a total of 380,772 dairy cows (25%). This figure is over 200,000 higher than the dairy cow population in county Tipperary, which is the second most highly populated county with a figure of 173,905. Followed by Limerick with a cow population of 119,361, closely behind is Kerry with 104, 805 dairy cows.
Leitrim remains the county with the smallest population of dairy cows in the country with just 2,640, this number has been decreasing since 2016. Dublin is coming in with 2,738 making them the second lowest populated county in Ireland for dairy cows.