Wednesday, August 10, 2022
Home Farming Tips How a Proper Zero-grazing Cattle Structure Should Look Like

How a Proper Zero-grazing Cattle Structure Should Look Like

by Harvest Money Editor
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A well-designed farm structure should be able to:

  • Reduce the cost of the materials or utilise locally available materials.
  • Provide safety and comfort to the animals.
  • Provide a safe and pleasant environment to the attendant.
  • Lead to higher productivity and profitability

Selecting a site for construction of a dairy unit:

  • The unit should be as near as possible to the source of feed/fodder to reduce labour costs of carrying the cut fodder to the cows and carrying manure back to the farm.
  • Proximity to the homestead in relation to the biogas plant is also an important consideration.
  • Easy access to the farm.
  • Use of local materials for construction of the unit would reduce cost.
  • Carry out regular maintenance of the zero-grazing unit while in use.
  • Safety from thieves and malicious neighbours or even farm workers.
  • Good manure handling design to  ensure  that  it  is  properly  disposed  of  without  being  an  odour  nuisance to  the  farm  and neighbourhood.
  • Good ventilation is good for a healthy respiratory system and adds to the comfort, which is crucial for maximal milk production.
  • Protection from rain, strong wind and hot sunshine. Where winds are strong consider utilising wind breakers like trees and buildings.
  • Different animals need to be isolated from each other to avoid injuries resulting from fights and mounting to control breeding and avoid spread of diseases.
  • Cow comfort is an important part of maintaining a healthy herd. Cows should be housed in well ventilated and clean cubicles. Cow comfort is very important to milk quality, and a priority for dairy farmers and veterinarians.
  • Bio-security
  • Provide music during milking time to reduce stress.

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