With the demands of modern-day dairy farming, it’s more important than ever to make sure that your farm runs as efficiently as possible, and this includes keeping on top of the demands of pasture management.
Good pasture management requires regular monitoring and making sure grass has met growth targets before being grazed again. Rubber matting is one of the most effective and sustainable ways to manage your pasture and ensure that your grass stays green and healthy by creating a comfortable surface for your animals to spend time on for longer lengths of time during wet weather.
Prolonged rainfall and wet soil conditions, combined with high stocking density on paddocks, provides the ideal conditions for soil damage from pugging and soil compaction. Severe pugging and compaction lead to more topsoil and contaminant runoff to waterways and can cause further issues on the farm. Making sure that your soil is well-drained and has time to recover properly between grazing demands is incredibly important to good pasture management. To make sure your grass has enough time to recover, livestock must be moved elsewhere. Oftentimes animals are moved onto feed pads, stand-off pads, HerdHomes, or shelters. Concrete surfacing is commonly installed on these pads and shelters, but concrete is cold and hard. Not the most comfortable or safe surface to stand animals on for long lengths of time. Concrete can get slippery, and the hard surface can really take a toll on the hoof and joint health of the animals. One way to keep your animals off pasture for longer is by installing quality, purpose-built rubber matting on concrete stand-off surfaces.
Benefits of Rubber Matting
Numat’s rubber matting solutions provide the ideal covering surface for both indoor and outdoor feed pads. It replicates the feel of real pasture, making cows more comfortable, more confident and more productive. The result is greater milk yield, healthier animals, reduced vet bills, and an overall increase in animal welfare.
Rubber matting is the ideal surface to move your stock onto during wet weather on your farm, without having to worry about injuries or any discomfort. Here are a few application examples:
Stand-Off Pads are becoming increasingly popular with New Zealand dairy farmers. It’s not surprising – the pads protect pastures, conserve grass, and minimise mud. Installing high quality, durable rubber, makes these stand-off pads more comfortable for your stock, allowing them to stay there for longer than on a concrete surface, giving your pasture time to grow strong and healthy for future grazing.
Shelters and HerdHomes
Traditional shelters on farms typically have concrete surfacing, but concrete is cold and hard and keeping animals on it for long periods of time can be quite painful and sometimes dangerous if the surface is not cleaned properly or becomes slippery. Numat cow barn matting provides excellent cow comfort. It’s warmer, drier, reduces straw wastage, and improves cow condition. Rubber matting has been proven to increase cow comfort, mobility, and milk yield while decreasing bedding costs and joint injuries.
Cows can often spend hours in not days consecutively on feed pads, so making sure that the surface is comfortable, and the cows are able to relax is critical to their health and animal welfare. Rubber matting can be an excellent alternative to concrete in this case; giving cows the assurance of a non-slip surface that is easy to keep clean and on which they can comfortably rest while keeping off pasture.
To find out more about rubber matting and whether it’s the right solution for you, give us a call on 0800 686 119.