1997 - Volume #21, Issue #1, Page #13[ Sample Stories From This Issue | List of All Stories In This Issue | Print this story | Read this issue]
New Calf Handler Doubles As A WarmerFirst-of-its-kind calf "handler" is equipped with a headgate so you can tag, brand, band, vaccinate, or do other work in the field. It can also be equipped with an electric heater that operates off a 12-volt battery so you can warm and dry newborn calves right out on pasture.
The unit mounts on wheels so it can also be used to haul calves home. An open mesh door on back lets the mother see the calf.
Made from fiberglass, the new calf handler is 24 in. wide, 45 in. long, and 42 in. high. It mounts on a pair of 10-in. wheels and is equipped with a fold-down gate at one end and a headgate at the other end that consists simply of an oval-shaped opening and a steel rod. The calf exits through a hinged mesh screen door at the back (a fiberglass door can be slipped behind the screen door to keep heat inside the unit). The 12-volt heater fits into the top of the removable lid. A 110-volt heater can also be used.
Inventor Curtis Aaberg, Fortuna, N. Dak., made his first unit 10 years ago for his own ranch. He's now producing them for sale. "They're designed to handle calves or other animals a week to 10 days old but will accommodate animals up to 300 lbs. They're big enough for calves or sheep to lie down or stand up. Once calf is restrained both your arms are free to work on it.
"It comes with a 4-ft. tongue so you can pull it behind an ATV. By pulling a pin you can remove the tongue and use an adapter to mount the unit directly on a pickup hitch. Works great for transporting a sick calf to your vet's office. The wheels and axle can be removed for transport by pulling two pins, although if your pickup rides high enough you may not even have to remove the wheels. The bottom of the unit can be equipped with an optional digital weigh scale to record the calf's birth weight."
Sells for $695 including wheels, heater, and lid. Aaberg says he's looking for distributors.
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Curtis Aaberg, Box 122, Fortuna, N. Dak. 58844 (ph 701 834-2372).
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