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

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HOUSING AND HANDLING

Advice on improving fire safety on your pig farm

A fire in a pig unit can have devastating consequences, often spreading quickly and destroying the piggery operation. Following a recent spate of farm fires in Ireland, some pig producers…

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…

WHATS IN YOUR LIVESTOCK SHED

What’s in Your Livestock Shed? visits a Gold Cup winner

What makes a Gold Cup winner? We look at some of the buildings and technology behind Washfold Farm’s success. Metcalfe Farms in Leyburn, North Yorkshire, is owned and run by…

Practical advice

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HOUSING AND HANDLING

How to prepare pullets for laying in multi-tier systems

Margins are tight in poultry production, and a traditional pinch point where savings can be found has often been pullet rearing, where farms often forgo specialist equipment in favour of…

HOUSING AND HANDLING

Advice on improving fire safety on your pig farm

A fire in a pig unit can have devastating consequences, often spreading quickly and destroying the piggery operation. Following a recent spate of farm fires in Ireland, some pig producers…

HOUSING AND HANDLING

The new EPEF 420 broiler standard and how to achieve it

Aviagen's Ross 400 Club was introduced to recognise farmers achieving the highest performance on broiler farms. Entry to the club is for those farmers that have achieved a European production…

FEED AND NUTRITION

Eliminating winter housing for cattle: options compared

An end to direct farm subsidies in some UK regions post Brexit has focused farmers’ minds on cutting winter housing costs. It costs between £1.20-£1.50 a head a day to…

HOUSING AND HANDLING

4 alternatives to spreading poultry manure on land 

Poultry farmers are increasingly looking at practical uses for poultry manure to future-proof their businesses and achieve additional income. The amount and timing of spreading on land – the most common way…

DAIRY

A dairy farmer's guide to robotic milking

Installations of robotic milking machines have surged over the past three years, taking the number of farms using the technology to between 900 and 1,000, or one in 10 UK…

Insights

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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…

HOUSING AND HANDLING

How free-range layer multi-tier systems work

Free-range hens are increasingly reared on flat-deck systems before being transferred to multi-tier sheds when coming in to lay. One company argues there is a better way, as Jake Davies…

HOUSING AND HANDLING

Wireless system aims to improve bird performance

An award-winning wireless sensor system to monitor environmental conditions in broiler sheds has been developed by researchers at University College Dublin to help find optimum conditions for bird growth. “It…

LIVESTOCK

Housing issues cause losses of £224 a sow a year

Pig producers could gain an additional £224 a sow a year by improving their environment to ensure pigs meet their genetic potential. On average, pigs only realise 35% of their…