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Haustein Farms ‘Around the World of Dairy’ Tour

Every day we have viewers contacting us from all over the world. Each one describing the uniqueness of their Dairy operation. We find it so interesting hearing and seeing the diversity in each farm from around the world. Because the truth is no farm runs the same. There are so many factors that make each farm unique. That is why we have started our ‘Cowsmopolitan Around the World of Dairy.’ We want to showcase your operations and the livelihood involved with running a successful farm.

To start our tour off, our first visit is to Haustein Farms, a Dairy farm located in Central Alberta, Canada. The farm is operated under a joint partnership between brothers Cal & Conlee and their parents Doug & Bernardette Haustein. The farm was homesteaded in 1905 by their Great Grandpa Paul Gabriel. Doug and Bernardette begain milking cows at the homestead in 1974 in a stanchion barn until the completion of their Robotic barn in 2015.

In 2015 Haustein Farms completed their Robotic Milking Barn

In 2015 Haustein Farms completed their Robotic Milking Barn

What is the size of your herd?
We run a mix of Dairy & Beef cattle. Our Dairy herd consists of 130 milking/dry cows, 45 bred heifers and 70 Dairy young stock. We also have 60 cow/calf beef pairs. As well as all the young steer calves in our feedlot.

What is your average annual Milk yield/Cow?
Our 305 DIM(Days In Milk) average is 10200Kgs 4.25%BF 3.6%P.

What is the current Milk price per litre in your area?
Last month the Milk price we were paid for was $84.61/HL.

What type of Parlour system is used on your farm?
We have Two Lely A4 Milking Robots with a Lely 100 Juno. The Cows are fed Steam rolled Barley with molasses and a small amount of protein pellet at the Robots through different Feed Augers.

Haustein Farms parlour consists of Two Lely A4 Milking Robots with a Lely 100 Juno

Haustein Farms parlour consists of Two Lely A4 Milking Robots with a Lely 100 Juno

What crops are grown on your farm?
We have a cash crop of 2400 acres which consists of Canola, HRS Wheat and Barley. Plus we have 500 acres of Forages.

What does the diet for your Milking Cows & Young stock consist of?
Our Milking Cows are fed a high roughage diet with focus on healthy Rumens. Their diet consists of Barley Silage, Alfalfa Haylage, Dry Hay, Hammered Barley, Hammered Faba Beans and Soya Meal.

How many employees do you have employed?
We have 1 Full-time hired hand to assist around the farm and in the field.

What type of Cow housing is provided to your herd?
We have free-stall cubicles with Gel Mattresses in the Milking Group and Dry Cow area. A straw pack is used for the Close up Cows.

A straw pack is used for the Close up Cows.

A straw pack is used for the Close up Cows.

What is your farms Breeding objectives and considerations when choosing your Sire’s?
We have been breeding our cows solely with Bavarian Fleckvieh Genetics for over 13 years now. Our herd is 100% Crossbred with varying percentages. Our goal was to achieve a low maintenance, profitable sound Cow that performs well and provides us with the long longevity through cross immersion. We look at all aspects of the cow and assess her faults and assets before choosing a sire that would best compliment or correct certain traits.

By using Fleckvieh this has provided us with more fertile and healthier body condition thanks to their dual purpose nature. Steer Calves and Cull Cows can be sold for Beef price and are not discounted.

Thanks to the Fleckvieh we do not use any ovsych program, have a 365 day calving interval, a preg rate of %35 and 1.7 inseminations per conception.

What Sires are currently being used on your Farm?
We use multiple Sires from the Bavarian Fleckvieh stud station in Germany and have Genetics from at least two dozen sires. Some of the current offspring we have within our herd are out of Hippo, Holzmichl, Harvester, Round Up, Rurex, Don Juan, Ettal, Zasport, Enrico, Engadin, Waterberg, Waldhoer, Varus, Van Damme, Reumut, Major Tom, Isegrim and IIion.

Milking Cows are fed a high roughage diet with focus on healthy Rumens

Milking Cows are fed a high roughage diet with focus on healthy Rumens

What Temperate Extreme’s do you need to deal with on your farm?
We have temperatures falling below -30celcius in the winter to temperatures reaching +30celcius in the summer. Our average rainfall is about 15 inches of moisture (rain & snow combined).

This is why we built our barn with lots of insutlation in the ceiling (R60) and used spray foams in the walls. Moisture and Temperature are controlled thanks to automated curtain panels and power assisted chiminey vents as well as our Aerobic Flush Manure handling system.

Our Alleys are flushed 24 times a day with recycled Aerobic lagoon water. The earthen lagoon provides a regulated temperature of the water flowing into the barn. The results given are it provides our herd with a warm barn in the winter months with no freezing occurring and a cool barn in the summer months with the floor keeping the air cool and dry.

Unique Facts about Haustein Farms

  • They were the first Aerobic Flush Barn in Canada. The system originated in Wisconsin 30 years ago.
  • They do not feel foot baths are necessary
  • They have not had a professional Hoof trimmer come to the farm in 3 years. They manage their hoof trimming by evaluating the hoof at the time of dry off and trim themselves as they see necessary.
  • They do not feel the need for a Vet to come to the farm for a monthly Herd Health Check
  • Most of the maintenance on the Robot’s is completed by themselves on farm

 

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