- Insulated roof
- Adjustable ventilation slider
- Optional free range
- Feed fence
- Lighting & electricity
- Can be moved by loader from the front and the side
- Optionally with sliding door and free range
- Size: 4,5 x 2,5 m
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In the first weeks of a calf’s life, it is separated from its mother and placed in individual calf housing systems. After 3 weeks, calves are usually placed in a group. The Topcalf group hutch is the perfect solution for calves between 3 and 12 weeks of age. This calf housing solution stimulates social interaction between calves, which has proven to results in a better solid food intake and growth.
Hygiene in the group calf hutch
Once a calf is housed in a calf group housing, the chance of infection spread is higher. Therefore, it is important to minimize the risks in the first place. The group hutch has plastic walls & grids which makes it very easy to clean once the calves have been transferred to the next accommodation. Moreover, this group shelter can be lifted by loader. This way the calf hutch can be moved and the remains can be cleaned.
In the first months of a calf’s life it is very vulnerable to infections and diseases. Respiratory issues are a huge threat and should be avoided. A calf feels most comfortable at temperatures ranges from 15 to 25 degrees Celsius. Outside this range a calf needs extra energy to keep its body warm, which reduces growth. Therefore, attention should be paid to the placement of the hutch, whereby draughts in the calf hutch should be avoided as calves are very susceptible to cold.
what are the benefits of group housing?
After birth, a calf is usually quickly separated from its mother. The advantage of housing calves this way, is that you can feed calves individually and the risks of infections are minimized. Moreover, less stress is experienced by the mother cow when the calf is separated sooner rather than later.
However some drawbacks are also presented. More labour is required to monitor each calf individually. Next to that, calves have less social interaction. For this reason more and more research has been conducted on housing calves in pairs and small groups. These studies show that putting calves together in an earlier stage has a significant positive effect on the calves growth. Calves stimulate each other to eat more and develop better social skills. Moreover, these studies have shown that when management is done well, calves are not exposed to increased health risks.