Jonathon and Alicia Lamb are dedicated to starting out their cattle with the greatest genetics, nutrition and environment they can provide. They also do their best to invest in the people who help make their operation and industry successful.
Family teamwork and industry research essential in helping family build a quality calf-raising facility. Four generations and counting, perseverance and hard work comes quite naturally to Hanke Farms Inc. in Sheboygan Falls. This dedication to agriculture has helped the Hanke family to build a thriving 720-cow dairy – and to rebuild quickly after a devastating fire.
Managing calf facilities in summer can be challenging, but preparing for the challenges before the hot weather hits can ensure your calves remain as healthy and comfortable as possible. Areas to evaluate include bedding, ventilation and nutrition.
Calf management ideas and recommended protocols have advanced significantly over the last 30 years, as have the calf housing products made by Calf-Tel. Hampel, a contract thermoformer, located in Germantown, first introduced the Calf-Tel hutch in 1981.Through Hampel’s proximity to Wisconsin farms, there was a company awareness of existing wood and fiberglass calf housing products, and of course a strong company background in the benefits of products made with thermoformed plastic.
Use this checklist to help your calves beat the heat this summer. Like many things in life, the key to success is being prepared. Getting your calf housing ready for summer is no different. Strategic planning today can ensure your calf raising program doesn’t skip a beat as the summer heat sets in.
Like all newborns, calves need a special environment to grow and thrive. Different considerations must be taken for newborn calves, but they still need special attention.
Despite the fact that calves are the future of every herd, calf housing is often an overlooked area or a second thought. It is not uncommon to see farms trying to convert a facility that was once used to house the milking herd or a shed into a calf housing facility.
Like human babies, newborn calves are born with little defense against diseases which can make them sick. To help protect these young calves and keep them healthy and growing, start them out in a clean, dry environment.
Calf housing, no matter what material, should be cleaned and sanitized between each calf. Depending on your farm’s calf weaning program this could be every six to eight weeks. Here is a look at the steps to follow when cleaning your calf housing.
Calves are the most valuable future assets on a dairy, but too often get thrown into poorly ventilated, poorly lit and poorly designed facilities. The temporary, makeshiftretrofit turns into a permanent problem, and "poof", calf health takes a dramatic hit, leaving the producer asking, "What went wrong?"
When making decisions on calf housing, consider what is right for the calf." That’s the advice of Mike Larson of Larson Acres Inc., who recently constructed four calf nursery barns on his family farm in Evansville. Mike consulted with a team of university and extension professionals in addition to conducting his own research and farm visits for nearly a year before deciding on the final barn design and what calf pens to use inside. In the end, it was Calf-Tel, manufactured locally by Hampel Corp. of Germantown.