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Read about strategies that can help you to save water when cleaning the yard.

  • Dribble bars

    Dribble Bars

    Description

    Dribble bars can be used to keep the concrete surface wet so the manure does not stick.

    Have been used on round yards draining to middle to wet whole yard but generally are only useful for small areas. They can use more water than they save.

    Tips on Getting the Best Result

    Use before cows enter yard for milking and turn off when cows arrive. 

    Pros and Cons

    Home made, effective if enough water is delivered, no labour required.
    Concrete may become slippery if not allowed to dry out, difficult to get good coverage, may upset cow flow if placed at dairy entry. 

    Issues in Making it Happen

    Labour

    No labour required

  • Sprinklers

    Sprinklers

    Description

    Sprinklers mounted on the holding yard rails can be used to pre-wet / keep yards wet and keep the cows cool.

    Mount on internal fence if possible or use rotation limiters to concentrate spray to where it is needed. Adjust timing or flow to ensure the underside / udder of cows is not getting wet. 

    Tips on Getting the Best Result

    Use sprinkler heads which deliver large droplets. Turn on prior to cows arriving in yard. Mount at a height where cows will not interfere with them. 

    Pros and Cons

    • Low cost with a dual use - wet yard and cool down cows. 
    • Uses too much water if left on continuously through milking.
    • Need a fresh supply of water. 

    Issues in Making it Happen

    Labour

    Create aerosols so may increase OH&S risks if dirty water is used.

    Animal Health


    Increase mastitis problems if teats get wet.

  • Tipping Drums

    Tipping Drums

    Description

    Self tipping drums can be placed strategically around the edges of the yard to keep yard wet or wash small areas. Pre-wetting the yard reduces the amount of water required for hosing.

    Drums are slowly filled from a water inlet and are mounted to automatically tip the water out when over filled. The timing can be varied by varying the rate at which they fill.

    Tips on Getting the Best Result

    Usually home-made out of 200L drums. Mount them above 2 meters to get adequate head. Install a locking / safety device to control when the drums tip if dumping in areas where people frequent. 

    Pros and Cons

    No labour required but the unpredictable timing of dumps reduces efficacy and may make them a danger to workers.

    Issues in Making it Happen

    Labour

    OH&S risks possible from unexpected tipping.

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