The hot and humid days of summer are here, and with that comes a high risk of cattle experiencing heat stress. Ensuring that your cattle have access to shade is a simple way to combat heat stress. If natural shade from trees is not an option, a shade structure is an easy, low-cost alternative.
We have several shade structures at Eden Shale that we utilize all summer. The nice thing about these structures is that they are low-cost, portable, and low-maintenance. If shade is not easily accessible on your farm, I highly recommend building a shade structure to protect your herd from heat stress.
You can find more information about shade structures, including design plans, under the "Producer Resources" tab or by clicking the button below.
Typically making hay in Kentucky can be a challenge due to the relative short spans between rain events. This year, once it dried up in June, we had beautiful 5 and 6 day windows to get up hay without a threat of rain.
We were able to finish up our first cutting on June 16th without any of the hay getting rained on before we baled it. Some of the bales did get a shower on them before we could get them into the barn, but hey, nobody’s perfect.
Our gamma grass that we burned back in April has come back nicely. As of early June it is a little over knee high. We have a group of replacement heifers that will graze the 3 acre stand several times throughout the summer. In the past we have been able to get 3 grazings from the gamma grass during the warm season.
In between baling hay we got our cows up 10 days after AI service and sorted them into their cleanup bull groups. They were then turned out on fresh pasture where the bulls will stay with them until August 1st.
In June we also switched out our two tractors for new ones. This occurs about every 10-12 months depending on how quickly we put hours on the tractors. I want to thank H&R Agri Power for their continued support of Eden Shale Farm.
I also want to thank our two interns Ty Wilks and Gregory Magsam for their efforts at the farm. Having two extra people around to help with the bustling work of summer sure does make thing go a lot smoother. And I apologize if this article seems short and choppy, because I know it is. Like many of you, I have been in the hay field all day and I am tired…