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Plastic Barrels Make Handy Calf Feeders
Empty 15-gal. barrels make great portable calf feeders, says Tom Cook of Pewamo, Mich. With nearly 300 dairy cows, he had plenty of empty teat dip and soap barrels on hand.
    He cuts plastic barrels in half lengthwise with a circular saw and secures them together with 1-in. long, 1/4-in. bolts with big flat washers. Five barrels cut in half bolted together creates about 25 ft. of trough to fill with supplemental grain for his calves on pasture. Handles on each end make it easy to move them or dump water when it rains.
    “I put 85 calves on pasture starting around June 1 and have 15 acres between three paddocks,” Cook says. “Every day we pull it forward about 100 ft. to spread the manure and reduce overgrazing in one spot.”
    The barrel feeders are light and easy to handle, yet very durable.
    “I’ve been using it for 15 years and have only replaced about half a dozen barrel halves,” Cook says.
    Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Cook Dairy, 11454 Parks Rd., Pewamo, Mich. 48873 (ph 517 449-0322; cookdairyfarmer@gmail.com).

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2018 - Volume #42, Issue #4