About 100 interested farmers came by to the calf stable visit on the Petersen farm in Riesbriek, Schleswig Holstein and informed themselves on site about the calf stable conversion. Experiences, practical tips and new ideas for successful calf rearing can thus be exchanged.
After the mother was no longer able to take care of the calves, the farmer thought about how to achieve better work efficiency and improve calf health. Dennis Petersen knew that this was not only achieved by purchasing a calf feeder, but that a whole concept for calf rearing had to be developed. For example, it was previously difficult to raise the calves in homogeneous groups of the same age so that they could be weaned at the same time. The family therefore came up with the idea of creating a calf barn with several small groups in which the calves could be fed by an automatic feeder in a targeted manner and weaned according to their age. The calves remain in individual pens for five days and are then fed with colostrum for three days, followed by two days of mixed milk. At this point, the calf feeder does most of the work. The calves are fed around the clock at a constant milk concentration and temperature. The machine automatically cleans all milk-carrying parts twice a day, making work much easier. In order to reduce the stress for the very small calves and during rehousing, the farmer first fills two small group pens with six calves. After 2-3 weeks, these two groups are then combined into one larger group pen.