Attention to dairy calf and heifer management is important for maintaining growth rates, minimizing health problems, and optimizing current and future profitability of the dairy farm. The presence of pumpkins and frost remind us that the winter months are just ahead, and with most of the crops for livestock now in storage, it’s time to prepare for these upcoming winter months.
A recent article at eXtension.org looks at the management of dairy calves and heifers during the winter months. The article, authored by Maurice Eastridge, professor and extension dairy specialist at The Ohio State University, discusses the following points:
- Feeding strategies to optimize growth of pre-weaned dairy calves during the winter months.
- Strategies to reduce the chance of hypothermia in pre-weaned dairy calves.
- Housing of dairy heifers during the winter.
- Feeding programs for weaned heifers.
- Advice on evaluating the number of heifers to keep on the farm.