(photo: article in UFA Revue – Swiss agricultural trade journal. Title reads: happy cows and pleased farmers.)
All over the world, CowSignals® and its trainers are working to improve animal welfare and make the dairy chain more sustainable.
CowSignals® trainer Martina Schmid researched the optimization of tie-stalls for her Bachelor Thesis at the school of Agricultural, Forest and Food sciences (HAFL) in Bern.
Last month, Swiss agricultural trade journal UFA Revue dedicated an article to her findings (see photo).
In Switzerland, 50% of farms still use tie stalls. Switching to free stalls is not always possible. The new trend is to optimize the tie-stalls to improve cow health and welfare – by constructing deep soft bed, for example. That idea was introduced years ago by CowSignals® trainer Christian Manser from the agricultural center St. Gallen.
“A good tie stall is better than a bad free stall” – Joep Driessen
As Martina’s research shows, it has stunning effects on health and sustainability!
She visited 23 farms with optimized tie stalls, documented the modifications and measured their results.
She found that with relatively small modifications (so without completely rebuilding their barn) farmers can achieve:
- better animal welfare (lower vet costs, clearer fertility signals, fewer hock inflammations and teat injuries, better claw health)
- higher milk production (higher feed efficiency)
- lower replacement numbers
- cleaner cows
The CowSignals® concept
This research is another testimony to the effectivity of the CowSignals® concept. By recognizing what a cow needs and working on achievable solutions, we can improve cow welfare and work towards a sustainable dairy chain.