Every farmer who works with cattle in a crush knows the frustration of using the same crush for large animals as well as calves. Normally there are a couple of feisty calves that will turn around in the crush before they reach the head clamp and then it is a hassle to get them lined up again.
To overcome this problem, George Viljoen of the farm Prairie, near Stutterheim in the Eastern Cape province of South Africa, built a second 500mm-wide crush for calves alongside the normal crush (which has a width of 750mm).
It is just wide enough to fit the electronic scale. He placed steel plates on each side at the end of the crush, just before the head clamp. This calms the calves because they cannot see out and are then more willing to put their heads into the head clamp.
“It is now such a pleasure to manage the calves in the narrower crush and I can easily brand or dose more than 60 calves in 20 minutes. My workers are just as happy and there is no longer any need for shouting and cracking of whips when we work with the cattle.” The sturdy crush, made of 32mm square steel tubing, cost R10 000 to make, including the head clamp.
ENQUIRIES: George Viljoen, email: firstname.lastname@example.org.