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FACILITIES & EQUIPMENT

Whether using a tie stall, freestall, dry lot or pasture, here are some tips for cow comfort and maintaining farm facilities and equipment.

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Not too long ago in this column, we discussed some of the different ways we cut metal in and around our farm shops; therefore, I thought it reasonable we talk about some of the ways to repair metal that either was cut by accident or broke outright on its own. 

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Should I fix that aging tractor or piece of equipment or trade it (or scrap it) and purchase a new one? That has always been a daunting question and, in times of tight- to no-profit margins, that question takes on all kinds of new layers.

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Harvesting high-quality milk involves interactions among humans, cows, milking equipment and the environment. Implementing and training staff on milking routine standard operating procedures can influence the outcome, but efforts in the parlour shouldn’t end there.

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The health and productivity of any tracked machine starts with its undercarriage. Representing a significant portion of a piece of equipment’s purchase price, the undercarriage also represents a high percentage of a machine’s lifetime operating costs, so proper maintenance and operation practices are critical for protecting your equipment investment.

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When working with dairies that are learning about robotic milking equipment, we always discuss maintenance costs. People tell me they’ve heard this cost is high. They want to know if this is true and, if so, why.

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While rotary parlours have become a predominant choice for milking large herds, rotaries are not a new idea. They date back to the unveiling of the Rotolactor at the 1930 World’s Fair.

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