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Barns & Equipment

Whether using a tiestall, freestall, dry lot or pasture, here are some tips for cow comfort and maintaining farm facilities and equipment.

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What started as an idea for three brothers to combine their dairy herds and build a new facility has led to one of the most automated precision dairies in the country, with robotic milking, cow monitoring, sand-bedded flush system, flexible stalls and a robot that delivers sand bedding to the freestalls.

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Belt-tracking issues have several causes. The most common belt-tracking problem I have seen stems from poor operating habits. During core formation, it is important to get hay under all the belts as soon as possible.

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While wooden hutches – consisting of a base, flooring and hutch system – are relatively inexpensive to build, they may not be the cheapest calf housing option available on the market today.

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You’re ready to trade off a piece of farm equipment, or trade for another farmer’s iron. You’ve looked at the “blue book” value and searched similar sales on various internet sites. You think you are fully prepared to make a bid. But you’d be wrong. You’re not prepared until you’ve made some inspection of and determined value for the tires.

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At Farm Credit East, we are often asked about equipment purchases – what constitutes a “major” equipment purchase, how to plan for them and whether to buy new or used. Paul VanDenburgh, an experienced credit officer and tax specialist, recently provided his insight on some of these frequently asked questions.

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The typical dairy farm uses a large amount of energy during milking activities. This is due to the frequency of milking and the energy-intensive nature of harvesting milk, keeping it cool and cleaning the equipment with hot water.

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