If spring is delaying the turnout of newly calved cows, remember to create a dedicated creep area and, despite its cost, do not scrimp on straw for newly born calves.
There are two main reasons for this:
- Wet, dirty bedding encourages the growth of disease organisms which remain in contact with the calf if the pen is not frequently well bedded.
- Damp bedding lies flatter and does not allow young calves to nest and stay warm.
Take the “knee-drop test” to assess the beds – you should be able to kneel down on the bed for 15 seconds or longer without your knees getting damp. (Testing while wearing waterproof trousers does not count!)
Robert Logan, Robert.email@example.com
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