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Ag Weather Impacts-Heat cools milk production
by Dennis Hull, click here for bio

Program: Ag Weather Impact
Date: July 27, 2018

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We all know how we feel during this hot end of July weather, but how about the livestock across the inland northwest. Yesterday, I spoke with Joe Rollinger of Rollinger Dairy Farms in the Sunnyside area where it’s been 95-100 degrees each day since Tuesday. This is well past the comfort range for milk cows.

Joe:

When you hit the 98-103 or 104, you see a dramatic drop.

Rollinger farms milks about 1800 Jerseys and Holsteins and Joe figures they lose about a gallon of milk production per cow per day when it’s hot. It takes a lot of extra effort to keep the cows comfortable when it’s hot.

Joe:

We bring our cows in and we’ve got sprinklers over the top of them and we wet them down to cool them down and get their body temperatures down. We do that three times a day to try and help them cool off a little bit. We soak them pretty good, so the water is running off of them and that helps cool them down.

Compounding the heat is the low price dairy farmers are receiving for their product which has fallen over 2 dollars per hundred weight in the last month.

Joe:

We were actually looking at a positive coming toward the last half of this year, but all at once it flipped upside down and went back the other way.

It looks like some relief from the heat is coming for the livestock toward the end of next week. My Thanks to Joe Rollinger of Rollinger Farms talking about the weather impacts on the dairy industry.

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