Building an off-paddock shelter is a big investment: in money, and in reworking your system to optimise its use. Considerations include their financial impact, and also their effects on animal and human welfare. Our host, Dennis Dravitzki, put in an off-paddock shelter last year.
Dennis and two other farmers will talk about their experiences installing and managing different off-paddock shelters. Why did they put one in, what benefits have they seen, what problems have they had and what were the solutions?
Managing the system
Dave Horne, Massey University, will talk about the pros and cons of off-paddock shelters, the opportunities they offer, and how they can fit into a smaller herd business. While Neil Chesterton, will discuss his findings after helping farmers to maximise the animal welfare benefits of their systems, including bedding management for best results.
Dave will also talk about the research at Massey’s No.4 Dairy, where they developed a housing system suitable for lower North Island conditions. Their aim was to explore the possibilities of combining high production and profit with soil and pasture protection, and lower nitrate leaching.
Dairy Trust Taranaki, will outline the research at their Stratford farm where they are in their second year of assessing the impact of using a covered stand-off pad on pasture growth; pugging damage; cow weights, condition, health and breeding; milk production, and nutrient losses.
Free event, all welcome. Morning tea and lunch provided.
Clean footwear at our field day will reduce the risk of spreading a disease, pest or weed.