Milking 400 cows on 160 hectares of land, GD Prout farm is a family-owned dairy farm located in Paeroa that has been operational for over 15 years.
Prior to installing rubber matting, the farm was experiencing significant issues around lameness within the herd. Farm manager Travis Sylvester explains: “We were probably having 7-8 cows a day. It was pretty bad.” This was not only causing a loss in milk production but an increase in veterinary costs.
he tracks the cows were walking on were puggy and constantly full of mud, creating an uneven surface for their cows to walk on. When looking for a solution to repair the damaged tracks, Travis and his father-in-law discussed concreting the tracks, until realising they would only be pushing the affected area further along and they would still be dealing with pugging issues. Concreting the whole track into the shed would also become quite costly.
Their other option was installing rubber matting on the tracks. After calling NumatAGRI to discuss track matting options, they decided that installing a durable, high-performing rubber product would be the easiest and most cost-effective option. Within two weeks of contact, the NumatAGRI projects team were able to get on-site and install the DairyGrip rolls.
Since installing rubber matting, Travis has seen the number of lame cows coming into the shed has gone down significantly.
The new rubber surface is protecting the tracks to the shed from becoming puggy while at the same time creating a safe and comfortable surface for the cows to walk on. The matting installed is heavy-duty and designed to perform in high-traffic areas, so Travis and his team don’t have to worry about driving their trucks, bikes, and tractors over the rubber. The track is now easier to clean and scrape down, allowing Travis to minimise debris that can damage hooves.
Travis is eager to continue using rubber matting at GD Prout farm and is looking at adding rubber on the feed pad at the end of this season. He hopes that this will continue to help lower the number of lame cows and protect the existing concrete surface from the heavy traffic coming on and off the feed pad.