Mobile Shade Rack

Project Overview

Project Type: Farmer
Funds awarded in 1999: $1,226.00
Projected End Date: 12/31/1999
Matching Non-Federal Funds: $1,750.00
Region: Northeast
State: Pennsylvania
Project Leader:


  • Animal Products: dairy


  • Animal Production: animal protection and health, manure management, pasture renovation, grazing - rotational, housing
  • Education and Training: demonstration, farmer to farmer
  • Pest Management: prevention

    Proposal summary:

    My plan is to build and use a mobile shade rack for dairy cows in a rotational grazing system. In my grazing system, when the weather is hot and sunny the cows leave the pastures for shade under trees in a sacrifice area. Once under the trees the cows remain there until I go to move them for milking in the barn. This creates a nutrient build-up under the trees that eventually kills the shade trees. This gathering also produces crowding that raises animal body temperatures even higher. Bare areas from under the trees from this gathering and are prime areas for parasites and makes for dirty cows that take longer to milk. The 20 foot by 70 foot mobile rack will be kept on paddock to eliminate the social aspect of shade. It will be moved around the paddock to prevent bare areas from forming. Therefore allowing for more uniform nutrient transfer. By keeping the cows eating more and keeping them more comfortable milk production should not drop during hot and sunny weather.

    Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.