A homemade tool has made free-stall grooming faster and easier at the George DeRuyter and Sons Dairy in Outlook, Wash. The farm designed a 3-foot steel arm that features finger-like projections —sort of a mini harrow — welded onto the end that reaches into free-stalls. The unit is bolted to the tractor and pivots on those bolts for easy maneuvering. The tool makes it easy to groom the stalls that are bedded with composted manure. “It just takes a few minutes per stall and the cows are much more comfortable and stall usage has gone way up,” says dairy partner Dan DeRuyter. “In fact, cows usually choose to lie inside in the free stalls even though they have the choice to lie outside in our open lots.
Homemade stall groomer works wonders
- Challenging global conditions mark path for dairy companies
- IDFA, Cornell launch dairy foods leadership development program
- Dairy markets: Class III futures lag global downturn
- Documentary profiles dairy workforce issues in Western New York
- Certified Animal Welfare Audits for Farms: Part 5 - Audit day
- USDA reports confirm tight cattle supplies