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Thread: Calf rearing/housing

  1. #31
    Mayo
    Guest

    Re: Calf rearing/housing

    My god. Bright, airy shed. Not an animal version of Auschwitz!

    Happy calves in groups with enough space to leg it around and move about. Fresh straw and sound drainage.

    The results speak for themselves. Far less stress means far far better immune system efficacy hence less disease. This has been proven in a myriad of studies.

  2. #32
    BewareoftheBull
    Guest

    Re: Calf rearing/housing

    Quote Originally Posted by heiniger View Post
    heres a picture of our starter pens, I altered it from 100% single pens to pens of five, just use single pens for colostrum. Also made gated yards the same size outside the shed and the calves go out all day then come in at night.

    huge improvements in calf health pneumonia and scours
    any problems with birds?

  3. #33
    sirbillyofweobley
    Guest

    Smile Re: Calf rearing/housing

    Quote Originally Posted by Friesian View Post
    Here are 2 pictures of our calf rearing shed. And we do use these pesky blue buckets, for water and meal. This year I have experimented with a 2 teat bucket on some calves and milk drunk from the bucket on other calves. From birth to weaning. To be honest I have not seen any real differance in calf performance and find the buckets easier to clean and disinfect after each feeding. We have gone through a lot of teats mind. I found the teats started to leak quite quickly. This year we have started using powder milk, and this I think has cut our scour problem to nothing, and you can feed lots of it as mayo said. Where as trying to increase whole milk would result in nutritional scours, and off meal for a few days.
    Friesian - that looks a well run unit. Plenty of ventilation, dry floor, good depth of fresh bedding. Calves look bright and well grown. Good job.

  4. #34
    henery
    Guest

    Re: Calf rearing/housing

    I run 2 Volac machines , two pens of twenty per machine, all in one shed, 80 on at the moment, all bought in. Scouring is not a serious problem, more nutritional scour as they start to take pellets in greater quantity. Shed is airy, but would be better with an open ridge.
    We are using Wynnstay contractor powder at 145 g per litre and 6 litres per day at the peak of the feed curve. Calves are very settled and quiet, weaning without incident.plenty of straw , hay is the devils work for calves IMHO.
    Best way I have reared calves, once trained they are little bother, with a lot of valuable info from the machines, suits me.

  5. #35
    heiniger
    Guest

    Re: Calf rearing/housing

    Quote Originally Posted by BewareoftheBull View Post
    any problems with birds?
    No, luckily we have no starlings on this farm. The last place I worked was black with the dirty f****rs.

    The problems we get I think are because weve got older calves up to 8m in the same airspace (you can see from pic attatched here) a second span of the shed with weaned calves in up to 8m.

    This will become less of a problem I hope because we are now block calving so all in all out and all the same age or there abouts. The outside yards have got bark down, its been there since October and seems fine it dries out on sunny days and pretty clean.

  6. #36
    nozzy
    Guest

    Re: Calf rearing/housing

    I agree that veal crates are not very nice to have calves in, but I see no problems with having 0-4 week old calves in single pens. And as for the spread of scour through the use of buckets, we have lost 1 calf since last august to scour, when a 10 year old was in charge of bucket cleaning duty.

  7. #37
    lazy farmer
    Guest

    Re: Calf rearing/housing

    Quote Originally Posted by protherofitzgibbon View Post
    Bedding calves down is a far better use of time than reading your bullshit posts!!!

    nope this time i would suggest you are the one talking crap.

    lazy

  8. #38
    lazy farmer
    Guest

    Re: Calf rearing/housing

    currently feeding in batches of 30, the first 30 now have access to grass, they will be out full time from mid march, had 160 calve in the last 3 weeks haven't jabbed any yet and haven't treated a calf for scours in 5-7 yrs can't remember. like mayo said they were designed for out door life and no offence but individual feeding may well work for some of you but to me that is not what nature intended and just creates work we feed all ours in 25 mins with a sub pump OAD all calves get up and feed if they don't then we find out why i do also check the youngest group in the evening just to check they have got the idea rarely is this a problem as they copy the rest of their group. OH and plenty of straw and in a shed with poor drainage we have the straw ontop of pallets to keep the beds drier

    lazy

    of course the most important thing we do is ensure every calf gets good colstrum thee best environment in the world won't help if they have no immunity

  9. #39
    coolman
    Guest

    Re: Calf rearing/housing

    Its all well and good to say that we should do everything as nature intended and whilst i agree about calves being outdoors asap im not so sure week old calves would thrive on OAD. Anytime i put very young calves on OAD they didnt do very well.

  10. #40
    GenuineRisk
    Guest

    Re: Calf rearing/housing

    While I accept that calves in hutches individually or other single penning system will thrive very well if looked after properly, you could say the same for any reasonable rearing system. However, as we're asking these animals to make us a decent commercial living, my own preference would be to rear in small groups so that the calves have interaction with their own kind and limited room at least to be able to play about a bit after the initial couple of weeks.

    I do wonder sometimes if some later onset lameness problems in dairy animals can in some part be attributed to restricted movement in very young cattle. It's been proven in studies in the US that bone density in young large mammals such as horses/cattle is maximised with reasonable exercise and periods of both steady and fast exertion in their first year of life.

  11. #41
    recoil
    Guest

    Re: Calf rearing/housing

    Quote Originally Posted by heiniger View Post
    heres a picture of our starter pens, I altered it from 100% single pens to pens of five, just use single pens for colostrum. Also made gated yards the same size outside the shed and the calves go out all day then come in at night.

    huge improvements in calf health pneumonia and scours
    Looks like a tidy setup. If I was rearing calves in sheds, that's how I'd do it.

  12. #42
    Foregoneconclusion
    Guest

    Re: Calf rearing/housing

    Quote Originally Posted by lazy farmer View Post
    currently feeding in batches of 30, the first 30 now have access to grass, they will be out full time from mid march


    of course the most important thing we do is ensure every calf gets good colstrum thee best environment in the world won't help if they have no immunity
    Hi Lazy, talking of immunity- what about the issue of husk and other illnesses lurking outside waiting to pounce- blackleg etc. I have always been intrigued by people who put their calves outside.. is it simply a case of using a field that is not infected ? I rear in pens of 5 but would love to have the confidence to get the little blighters outside.

  13. #43
    lazy farmer
    Guest

    Re: Calf rearing/housing

    Quote Originally Posted by Foregoneconclusion View Post
    Hi Lazy, talking of immunity- what about the issue of husk and other illnesses lurking outside waiting to pounce- blackleg etc. I have always been intrigued by people who put their calves outside.. is it simply a case of using a field that is not infected ? I rear in pens of 5 but would love to have the confidence to get the little blighters outside.

    good question we have only ever lost 1 calf to blackleg thought about vaccinating but never got any further and we use first graze autowormer for calves so they seem to build up immunity as they go. though last year we had some incalf heifers coughing so we wormed them as they passed from one paddock to another took 6mins for 65 heifers.we get very few problems using the same paddocks each spring though i would say as soon as they have taken the winter stored grass down they are moved on. they are never anywhere longer than 10 days usually less.

    lazy

  14. #44
    JD Everytime
    Guest

    Re: Calf rearing/housing

    this is our calf house fed on twin teat feeder then get them on to the pail at 3/4 weeks

  15. #45
    Jim Webster
    Guest

    Re: Calf rearing/housing

    We went from individual hutches on grass to small groups of four with their hutches in a separate pen on grass.
    They got their milk poured into a trough,and then the same trough was their water supply for the rest of the day. They had a second trough for cake.

    I was never happy with hutches on concrete because it just doesn't drain and the bedding got wet, we had hutches on crusher run and they worked better, but on grass and moved, perhaps weekly, was best

    Jim Webster

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