Know How / Housing and handling

Advice and information on livestock housing  and shed design to ensure your animals’ welfare and productivity. Compare different types of housing and bedding and read case studies on other farmers. Get tips on stock handling equipment, including cattle crushes and races, dairy parlour design and robotic milking.

Case studies

See all

WHATS IN YOUR LIVESTOCK SHED

What's in your Livestock Shed? A £50k youngstock conversion 

A purpose-built youngstock shed has reduced labour requirements and improved the health of heifer replacements at a Welsh dairy farm. The Jones family returned to milk production in 2012 after…

WHATS IN YOUR LIVESTOCK SHED

What’s in Your Livestock Shed? visits ultra-modern beef unit

Abattoir and meat processing company Pickstock has invested in rearing, handling and finishing facilities at Brongain Farm, Llanfechain, where it will be finishing 1,000 dairy-bred beef calves annually. Pickstock already…

LAYERS

Rearer's advice on getting pullets off to a good start

Modern hybrid hens are genetically sophisticated and achieving their productive potential will only be possible if the development period from chick to hen is carefully managed. Attention to detail is…

HOUSING AND HANDLING

Family dairy saves money by making their own calf hutches

Dairy newcomers the Courtier family from Dartmoor switched from group housing calves to single hutches they designed and made themselves, to save money. Julian Courtier, who manages the 350-cow spring-…

SHEEP

How an Oxfordshire sheep unit sells 1.92 lambs per ewe

An early-lambing flock is achieving feed conversion rates of 2.5:1 and is selling 1.92 lambs per ewe. Michael Priestley visited Warborough Farm with the Nuffield Beef and Sheep Group to…

HOUSING AND HANDLING

How freedom farrowing pens match crates on performance

Traditional farrowing crates are used in the pig industry as they give piglets the best chance of survival. However the supermarket drive to increase pig welfare in indoor systems could…

Practical advice

See all

HOUSING AND HANDLING

5 bits of kit every poultry farmer should own

If there’s one thing that sorts the best poultry producers from the average, it’s understanding the environment of individual sheds. This is best done by measuring every parameter possible -…

HOUSING AND HANDLING

Guide to effective dairy parlour cleaning

Ineffective cleaning of the internal surfaces of the milking system increases the risk of bacteria and milk residues building up. As well as potentially leading to higher Bactoscans, this raises…

BROILERS

Advice for poultry farmers considering a shed refurbishment

It is possible to get top performances from older poultry sheds – but certainly more difficult - and the reality is many broiler farms in the UK are past their…

PEST MANAGEMENT

Guide to managing rats on your farm

Autumn is a time when rat populations can start taking hold on a farm as food supplies dry up in the field and cold and wet weather sets in. However,…

HEALTH AND WELFARE

Q&A: Pneumonia in calves and how to combat it

Young calves have a big surface area for their body size, which means they can lose heat very quickly. This, combined with the fact their immune system is not yet…

HOUSING AND HANDLING

Which milking parlour is best for your dairy?

Having the best parlour for your system can pay dividends, in terms of milk yield, quality and your work life. If you’re thinking about changing your parlour or going into…

Insights

See all

FEED AND NUTRITION

Research shows benefits of pair housing calves pre-weaning

Pair housing calves before weaning can help them adapt better to different situations as they mature, leading to improved concentrate intakes and higher growth compared with those housed alone. Professor…

POULTRY

Is now the right time to go into poultry farming?

Consumer demand for eggs and poultrymeat have risen steadily over the past 10 years. Buoyant markets have already prompted hundreds of farmers to diversify into broiler and free-range egg production.…

POULTRY

How a high-tech poultry unit is opening up to the public

If there is one criticism that can fairly be levelled at the commercial poultry sector in the UK, it is that engagement with its ultimate customer, the British public, can…

SLURRY AND MANURE MANAGEMENT

Guide details how farmers can reduce ammonia emissions

A  guide published on Friday (27 July) sets out the steps farmers, advisers and contractors can take to reduce ammonia emissions and help improve air quality. The Code of Good…

PIGS

Q&A: Pig housing - balcony systems explained

Balcony systems can offer a practical housing solution for pig units by increasing floor space within the footprint of existing sheds. Few of these systems exist in the UK but…

HOUSING AND HANDLING

10 Danish loose farrowing pens compared

Ten European loose-housed farrowing pens are being assessed for pig, piglet and worker welfare in a world-leading product test. This follows industry targets for 10% of Danish sows to be…

POULTRY

Latest advances in science for poultry farmers

Every year, hundreds of academic papers relevant to poultry are published, with their findings often trickling down to farms in the months and years that follow. Here, Poultry World rounds…

HOUSING AND HANDLING

Faster broiler growth rates from poultry litter burning

The way a broiler shed is heated can have a significant bearing on the performance of the flock. Indirect heating of broiler sheds using biomass such as poultry litter as…

PLANNING PERMISSION

Opposition and errors hamper poultry planning applications

Poultry farmers are finding it harder than ever to get planning applications for new buildings through the system. Local authorities are making too many mistakes in the planning process and…