Have a Comprehensive Plan to Beat Heat Stress

Heat Stress Cows

Written by: Daniel Kohls, P.A.S. – Form-A-Feed Nutrition and Production Specialist

Even though hot summer days seem weeks away, now is the time to start protecting your herd against heat stress. Cow comfort, cow behavior, and grouping issues exacerbate themselves when heat stress is added to the mix. Lower milk production, poorer reproduction, elevated somatic cell count (SCC), increased lameness, and increased cull rate can all be magnified by heat stress events — as they happen and long after the heat has passed. This makes a well-designed plan a high priority for every dairy.

Auditing your dairy for heat stress preparedness and making appropriate changes are highly profitable practices.

Areas to review in your dairy  should include, but are not limited to:
  • Water quality and availability
  • Shade access
  • Air quality
  • Wind and ventilation
  • Parlor and holding area cooling
  • Evaporative cooling equipment such as sprinklers
  • Fly control
  • Nutrient balance
  • Hydration therapy strategies

The use of our Heat Stress Risk Snapshot is an easy to use tool to assist with preparing your dairy for the summer.

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Evaluating Technologies and Innovations for Dairies

Written by: Dave Lahr, M.S., Form-A-Feed Nutritionist

Technologies and Innovations for Dairies

Dairies have been adopting new technologies for generations.  Our grandparents or great-grandparents may have been among the first in the area to use a milking machine, or AI.  Can you imagine dairying without bulk tanks and refrigeration, or automatic waterers?  Now, robotic milkers and computerized calf feeding systems are common.  New tools and technologies are becoming available with increasing frequency.

So how does a dairy manager decide which technologies are right for their operation?

The ones with the most enticing advertising, or the one used by that elite herd you just read about?

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Weyauwega Annual Fire District Training at CHS Feed Mill

img_6658On Monday, October 10, 2016 the Weyauwega Area Fire District held a training on grain rescue safety for their volunteer fire fighters at CHS Larsen Cooperative, in Weyauwega. Harvest is well underway and farmers will soon be filling their grain bins again. Working in grain bins can be a dangerous activity. Thus, it is very important to be prepared for any unforeseen emergencies during harvest and have the proper training and equipment.

During the training on Monday night the fire department practiced a few rescue scenarios. They used their Grain Rescue Equipment, including the Great Wall of Rescue, ropes, and harnesses, which they were able to purchase last year with a CHS safety Grant. They partially buried a volunteer firefighter in a load of corn at the mill and then used the Great Wall of Rescue, which acts as a cofferdam, to properly rescue a victim out of loose grain. (more…)

Weyauwega Area Fire District Trains at CHS Larsen Cooperative Feed Mill

On Monday, September 21, 2015 the Weyauwega Area Fire District held a training on grain bin safety for their volunteer fire fighters at CHS Larsen Cooperative, in Weyauwega. Harvest is just around the corner and farmers will be filling their grain bins again. Working in grain bins can be a dangerous activity. Thus, it is very important to be prepared for any unforeseen emergencies during harvest and have the proper training and equipment.

The Weyauwega Area Fire District was selected for a donation from CHS Corporate Citizenship. They received a check for $5,610. With this donation from CHS the fire district was able to purchase Grain Rescue Equipment, including the Great Wall of Rescue, ropes, and harnesses.

img_3419smBob Krentz, CHS Larsen Cooperative Feed Manager awards Tom Cullen, Weyauwega Area Fire Chief with CHS donation.

During the training on Monday night the fire department practiced a few rescue scenarios. They partially buried a volunteer firefighter in a load of corn at the mill and then used the Great Wall of Rescue, which acts as a cofferdam, to properly rescue a victim out of loose grain.

“Having this equipment if needed and the knowledge of how to use it properly is a powerful tool for our volunteer team,” said Tom Cullen, Weyauwega Area Fire Chief, “We had a perfect opportunity to work with CHS Larsen Cooperative Feed Mill to be able to actually use this equipment in grain and get the real experience of what to expect.”

They also we able to tour the mill during this training, this helps the firefighters to be more familiar with the CHS Larsen Cooperative Feed Mill. CHS Larsen Cooperative is very grateful to have such a great fire department to work with in case of any future emergencies.

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