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Extension > Agriculture > Dairy Extension > Facilities > Are you ready for hot weather?

Are you ready for hot weather?

Kevin A. Janni

Published in Dairy Star June 13, 2009

Dairy cows are most productive at temperatures between 41 and 77° F. At temperatures above 77° F, cows begin to use energy to rid themselves of heat generated by digestion and metabolism — energy that could be used to produce milk or grow a calf if pregnant. As relative humidity increases at temperatures above 77° F, the combined heat and humidity increases the heat stress that cows experience.

Minnesota has already experienced temperatures in the 90’s. It is highly likely that your cows are going to experience hot weather this summer. Are you ready for it? What are you planning to do when the heat and humidity create heat stress? Preparing for hot weather now will help you provide exceptional cow comfort later. You can get a job done quicker and better if you have the right tools in working condition and you know how to use them. So what cow cooling tools do you have in your management toolkit? Are they in working condition? Does everyone who works with the cows know when and how to use your cow cooling tools?

Naturally ventilated barn

Naturally ventilated barn with mixing fans pointed downward towards the cows at the feed bunk for cooling.

There are several effective cow cooling practices that you can use to help your cows get through a period of hot and humid weather.

More information about these cooling methods is available in our facilities section.

There are several common cooling system problems to be on the lookout for as you prepare for hot weather.

Be ready for hot weather and be cool.

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