The UW-Extension Tri-County (Ozaukee, Sheboygan, and Washington) Ag Team in cooperation with the Eastern Wisconsin DHIC will be sponsoring Dairy Facility Farm Tours on Thursday, Dec. 5. The tours will include seven dairy farms located in Ozaukee and Sheboygan Counties that have all made recent modernization improvements in their dairy facilities to increase productivity and animal comfort as well as reduce labor.
The dairy facilities tour will feature an open house format in which dairy producers can visit any number of the seven farms they wish between 10:30 am and 3 p.m. There will not be a central meeting place or any formal presentation. Farmers can simply select which farms they would like to visit on their own time schedule between 10:30 am - 3 pm on Dec. 5. A farm representative will be on hand at each farm to answer questions for the tour participants. Herd sizes featured on this year's tours range from 75-625 cows.
For producers interested in upgrading their milking facilities the tours will include a double-8 parabone parlor built inside an existing stall bam, a double-13 parallel parlor, double-6 and 12 swing parlors and flat-barn parlors
Several cattle housing configurations will be featured on the tour including: three and four row freestall barns. Bedding systems in the barns will include bedded pack, sand, and mattresses with shavings. There will be heifer replacement facilities including new buildings designed for calves to 3 months and from five months to breeding age. There will also be different ventilation systems to see, varying from natural to tunnel ventilation
These tours are designed to help generate ideas for dairy producers who are considering future improvements and modernization in their own dairy facilities. Host farmers will be on hand to share their experiences in the building process and to explain what they like about their facility and what they might change if they were to do it again. The complete farm descriptions along with tour maps showing the farm locations, can also be received by contacting Don Mier, UW-Extension Dairy and Livestock Agent at (920) 459-5916 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Tour information and maps can also be downloaded from the Sheboygan County UWExtension web site at http://sheboygan.uwex.edu/agriculture/
Source: Sheboygan County Extension