Here is one of the ration recipe sheets we get from our dairy’s nutritionist that we use to feed our cows for their dietary needs. This single shows just five of our seven different rations for the many different groups of cows we have. We group cows based on several factors such as milk production, pregnancy, and age to make sure they receive the most nutritive feed possible and remain healthy. This sheet is similar to those found on dairies everywhere and is not unique to just our dairy and as you can see corn is just one of the many things cows eat.
A few years ago a good friend took me flying and I forgot the aerial pictures I took were on my phone here is a view from the south.
You might wonder where cows sleep on a modern dairy farm (you might have heard them called factory farms too).
On our dairy farm cows sleep in various places.
Some of our cows sleep in freestall barns:
The stalls are cleaned daily, leveled several times a week and new bedding added every 2 weeks. Here is a bit more about making the cow beds. The cows who sleep in these barns also have access to outside corrals in the appropriate weather.
Some of our cows and younger heifers sleep in corrals:
Our pregnant cows who will be having their baby calves any day sleep on a bedded pack:
The maternity pen for the expectant cows is cleaned every day however we have to completly change the bedding several times a year. First we remove all the old bedding, then add a little sand to cover the dirt and last we add several inches of almond shells.
We also have some animals who sleep in the pasture:
Today is National Agriculture Day and we want to send thanks to everyone who supports Agriculture with the products you buy. It truly is an honor to be involved in a career that allows us to feed a growing world.
Here is a great Ag Day video from the folks at AdFarm:
Cleanliness and safety is something that we think about before we even think about milking the cows. Cleanliness starts with the cow beds andalso by keeping our cows healthy . We wash our milk pipelines three times a day once between every milking shift, the milk tank is washed once a day after it has been emptied and the milk pumped out and onto the tanker truck. Food safety is something paid close attention to on a dairy farm here are few pictures showing what we do to produce healthy refreshing milk!
Hey Cheese Lover’s today is your day so vote for up to 3 of your favorite cheeses below. Feel free to add any not here.
There’s nothing that lifts the human spirit more than making one feel like they matter for who they are…
…today I felt like I mattered when a simple blog post with a silly title was as popular as it was.
On our farm we use eartags to give each animal an unique identifier that allows us to keep important health records for each animal. Here are a few pictures that show the tags up close.
The tags are applied in a similar fashion to earrings through a soft portion of the ear. Each tag is self contained and is clean and sterile.
The information of the tags includes our farm brand (starting at the very top of the biggest tag), next is the unique “840″ number assigned to only this animal in the United States, followed by the unique number for our farm, in this case 2129. The small white tag has the same numbers and also id an EID tag that contains an RFID information. We currently do not utilize the RFID tag outside of visual use however are we will be implementing the electronic reading in the future to help with efficiency and to eliminate human error.
Awesome sunrise taken from one of our barns.