Reduce Heat Stress This Summer by Properly Ventilating Your Dairy Barn

The heat of the summer is back again, and while many of us are lucky enough to recluse back to the air conditioned office, dairy farmers and dairy cows are not so lucky. Not only can this weather be uncomfortable for farmers to work in, it can also cause discomfort on their checkbook. According to a study by Virginia Tech, “cows start to experience heat stress when temperatures exceed 77 °F or at slightly lower temperatures if the relative humidity is greater than 90 percent. Heat stress in cows causes decreases in dry matter intake (DMI), milk production, and reproduction.”

In other words, the longer the cows suffer in the hot, humid air, the less your dairy operation will produce. So, how can you improve ventilation in your dairy barn? Virginia Tech lays out four key components that are required to keep a dairy barn well ventilated: 1) Air Exchange; 2) Control; 3) Flexibility; 4) Good Barn Construction.

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Natural Light Fabric Structures can help you design your next freestall barn or calf barn to meet these four ventilation requirements. The design of Natural Light Fabric Structures, with high side walls, ridge vents and gable vents, will provide the high air velocity and high rates of air exchange that are necessary for maximum cow comfort. The “hoop” shape of the structures is designed to act like a chimney. The hot, moist air is released through the top ridge vent, while the cool, dry air remains on the bottom. With the addition of sidewall dairy curtains to Natural Light Fabric Structures, farmers can control air movement at different rates from season to season.

Want more information on Natural Light Fabric Structures? Check out our website or call our toll free number       888-708-3278. Our agriculture construction professionals will be happy to speak with you!

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