Removable panels, a feature of the calf pens at the University of Minnesota’s Southern Research and OutreachCenter, give researchers the option to socialize two or more newly weaned calves prior to moving them into a larger group pen. To expand pen size, they remove the panel that separates one calf pen from another.

A study slated to begin this fall will examine the effect of group versus individual feeding during the early post-weaning period. The researchers will convert the pens to socialize up to six calves. The calves will socialize for two weeks and then move into larger group pens in the grower barns.