Father and son team Ian and David Murphy milk 450 cows near Tynan in Co Armagh.
The herd is currently averaging 9,000L at 4.45% butterfat and 3.76% protein. They breed all their own replacements and have maintained a commitment to continuously developing the farm over many years. Their latest investment is a block of 60 new cubicles. The doubles are 5 metres in length with 1.2 m centres.
“We have always recognised the need to provide the cows with the highest levels of comfort,” David explained. “If they are not lying down and at their ease, then they are not producing milk.” He added:“It was for this reason that we decided to invest in the new water mattresses and pillows from Teemore Engineering. “The difference they have already made is akin to that of day and night. “We have been watching the cows closely over the last number of weeks and we have noticed that they will opt for the new cubicles with the water beds when they are given a free choice.”
Teemore’s Fergal Quinn was a recent visitor to the Murphy farm. He explained that Ian and David had purchased the new Aqua Star Ultimate water beds. He said: “This is the ultimate cow comfort mattress that also battles heat stress. It acts to eliminate pressure points. “The water mattress allows the animal to regulate its temperature. It also optimises blood circulation and increases milk production. “Aquastar comes in a continuous roll with one water chamber per cow space. The Aquatop cover comprises 35mm of high-density latex.
“In addition, latex underlay maximises comfort for the animal when rising and lying down eliminating the risk of injury.”
Teemore Engineering will have a major presence at this year’s Royal Ulster Winter Fair. The Co Fermanagh-based company manufactures and distributes a range of high-quality products, designed to improve animal performance and comfort. Teemore will also be featuring its extensive range of crush handling and gating systems at the upcoming Winter Fair. Of particular interest to visitors will be the company’s new calving headlock and caesarean gate.
The range of equipment items on display by Teemore will include feed barriers, pen dividing gates, drinkers and the company’s extensive range of cattle handling facilities. Meanwhile, the challenge of calf rearing has been made considerably easier for dairy farmers, throughout the UK and Ireland, courtesy of Teemore’s association with the Agri-Plastics calf hutch range. Manufactured in Canada, the hutches are renowned internationally as the toughest of their kind on the market today. Both group and single calf options are available.