Researchers at the University of Guelph want to find out more about the way dairy farmers feed and manage young dairy calves. In particular, they are interested in the use of automated milk feeders in Canada. Dairy farmers across Canada are encouraged to fill out an online survey at http://fluidsurveys.com/s/milkfeedingdairycalves/
You may have already seen or heard about this survey through CanWest DHI, Valacta or the Milk Producer magazine's February 2015 issue.
The survey will gather information about your experiences feeding and managing young dairy calves and help researchers identify reasons why some producers have switched to automated feeding and why others have kept on using manual feeding methods. The survey also will help identify the perceived advantages and challenges both groups of farmers face with these two feeding systems and document some of the key management practices that characterize both types of systems.
The information you provide will help researchers identify specific areas where more research is needed to help strike a balance between the use of available technology and the implementation of good management practices to improve calf welfare and performance. Future on-farm research with automated milk feeders will help identify and refine best management practices to facilitate successful integration of this equipment on-farm.
Everyone who completes the survey and provides an email address will also be entered into a draw to win 1 of 2 $250 cash prizes.
The project “Innovative feeding and best management practices for the very young dairy calf to improve calf performance, welfare, and future productivity” is funded under the Dairy Research Cluster Program, Dairy Farmers of Canada.
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