Hoard's Dairyman Guernsey Farm
HOARD’S DAIRYMAN FARM MODERNIZATION CONTINUES
We are now milking 350 cows in the parlor. The milking center includes a double-10 herringbone, rapid-exit parlor. We will have electronic ID, including transponders that monitor cow activity. We breed as many cows as possible on the basis of activity and visual heat detection and have cut down on use of reproductive hormones. Currently, 80 percent are bred on standing heat.
The milking center has a larger-than-normal basement where we have located as much equipment as possible. This means less space taken up on the ground floor, a more secure place for some chemicals, and a quieter milking area. To the extent we thought feasible, we chose a number of energy-saving features, as well as done extensive planning to reduce the possibility of voltage problems.
Our electronic ID system enables us to use sort gates, catch pens, and a palpation lane. We are using feed bunks rather than flat mangers. This is a biosecurity measure and to trade more clean-up time for no push-ups.
Our initial 60-foot-wide free stall barn has 232 stalls. It is clear span with a drive alley and two rows of sand-bedded, face-in stalls. Sand in the manure will settle out in a 20- by 60-foot sand trap located between the barn and the earthen storage.