Progress towards the dairy shed commissioning on June 25 continues with the installation of milking plant equipment. Stock purchased will be arriving on farm from today onwards and begin their transition onto winter crops. The entire farm has received 25KgN/ha (units of nitrogen) in the past week as all young grass has now been grazed by the young stock on farm.

Dairy shed design and layout

Progress towards the dairy shed commissioning on June 25 continues with the installation of milking plant equipment. Stock purchased will be arriving on farm from today onwards and begin their transition onto winter crops. The entire farm has received 25KgN/ha (units of nitrogen) in the past week as all young grass has now been grazed by the young stock on farm.

For a visual scroll through of the conversion progressing since Christmas click here http://www.southerndairyhub.co.nz/photos/

This week’s activities

  • The dairy shed continues to be the hub of activity with the entry and exit areas now concreted. Pipework on the rotary entry and exits is being installed. Three backing gates now occupy the yard to cater for the entry and exit lanes and trial design of herds. The main switchboard is being installed. Milking equipment such as cup removers, clusters, milking pipes are being fitted to the bails.
  • Stock water is connected to 65 percent of the milking platform including the young stock block.
  • The implement shed is nearing completion with the dosatron system to be set up within a fortnight.
  • Farm houses have been painted; carpets and curtains installed; the kitchens, bathrooms, landscaping, and driveways complete.
  • 25 units of nitrogen has been applied across the farm.

Consents status

Effluent: Revised consent received. Activating use in June.
Dairy shed: Building consent in place. Code of compliance expected June.
Accommodation houses: Building consent in place. Code of compliance expected June.
Water: Revised consent received. Activating use in May.

Dairy shed specifications

The design for the dairy shed is a 60 bail rotary platform running the De Laval system. The main contractor is Southland Farm Services with Milne Builders contracted to complete the shed build and research facilities. A.S Major Consulting Limited are the consulting engineers, Dougs Engineering the yard requirements, and Southland Electrical and Refrigeration the electrical specifications. The proposed structure is all galvanised steel, colour steel roof cladding, colour steel EPS panels to walls (and ceilings to rooms). All slab concrete is min 25 MPA concrete to required finish.

table

Six entry and exit lanes will lead into the dairy shed yard to be able to cater for the requirements of the research having multiple treatment herds along with the control herds. This aims to allow flexibility and not disrupt or hold up milking of the herds.

Research facilities will include a 15 cow herringbone pit with vet race and crush along with lab and research rooms.


Southern Dairy Hub laboratory layout for research purposes

Southern Dairy Hub Lab layout

Additional herd details

BVD and Johne’s status: BVD vat test clear, herd tested for Johnes with 4 positives returning which have been rejected.

BCS profile and targets at dry off: All cows must be minimum 4.5 on delivery. Cows have been independently conditioned scored at the start of April and again one week prior to delivery, any cows under 4.5 BCS have the right to reject.

Shed history: Herringbone shed.
Milking frequency: The herd is a twice-a-day milking (TAD) herd but have been placed on once-a-day (OAD) from the beginning of April this season to ensure BCS targets are met.
Rejection rate: 5 percent.
Lepo vaccinated: Two weeks prior to delivery.
Tail status: Older animals have some shortened tails; younger cows have full length tails.
Stock transport: Stock will be carted from Levin to Blenheim with an overnight stop, then continue from Blenheim to Ashburton with an overnight stop before arriving on farm.

MA cows purchased from Levin

This week’s photos

Aerial drone footage at the Southern Dairy Hub has been supplied in kind by Country and Co Southland. View the footage here.

For further information on the Southern Dairy Hub click here.