Thursday, May 15, 2014

When is a Vent Not a Vent?

Two days ago I walked all the calves on a dairy in central New York State. They are housed in hutches with collars and tethered at the front of the hutch.

At this time of the year the rear vents are opened. A auto-size tire is slid under the rear of the hutch. The combination of these two adjustments should be to increase air movement through the hutch.

It was a warm day at noon. My recording thermometer read 87 F sitting on a bale of straw sitting in an unused hutch. Thus, some air movement inside hutches would be helpful.

However, when is a vent not a vent? When the person(s) bedding hutches places too much bedding too far back in the hutch. Many of the hutches were bedded well - the combination of long wheat straw and sawdust was placed far enough forward in the hutch to leave the base at the rear open for air entry. 

However, more than a few hutches had the bottom rear vent space fully blocked with bedding. So, like any other protocol, folks need to be re-trained in the spring to adopt "summer-time" bedding practices.

Perhaps you have other seasonally-specific protocols on your dairy - remember that nearly every year workers need to be refreshed on correct techniques.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

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