Are your cattle getting enough water at the trough?

Cows at Moore Concrete 500G Drinkers outside the milking parlour at AFBI Hillsborough
Cows at Moore Concrete 500G Drinkers outside the milking parlour at AFBI Hillsborough

Lactating dairy cows yielding 14L/day need 60-80 litres/day of water. Those yielding up to 36L require 80-100L/day, while cows milking 45L/day need 130-155L.

As a general rule of thumb, lactating dairy cows must have free access to drinking water. These animals cannot afford to be without it.

Up to 80 to 90% of the water requirements of milking cows are met by drinking water and 30 to 50% of their water needs is consumed in the first hour after milking.

Dairy cows can drink quickly - up to 14 litres/minute. So it is important that the on-farm infrastructure and water flow rates are adequate to meet the demands of the herd.

Dry cows need up to 55L/day, calves require 20-25L, beef cattle (300kg) need 20-25L/day, cattle close to finishing (600kg) need 35-60L, depending on the system, and stock on high concentrate diets need up to 70L/day.

This all adds up to an awful lot of water. In fact, ‘water deficiency’ can be one of the biggest hurdles to performance on many livestock farms, a point taken up by Moore Concrete’s Jeff Haslett.

“Providing adequate water is a key determinant of yield/growth for all stock. Making this a reality requires the availability of sufficient drinking troughs across the grazing platform and in sheds.

“Recent years have seen a significant increase in dairy herd size across Northern Ireland. However, this has not been matched with a similar scaling-up of the water supply available to these animals.

“The easiest way of achieving this is through an investment in additional drinking troughs.”

Moore Concrete manufactures a comprehensive range of quality concrete water troughs, varying in size from 15 gallon to 500 gallon. The range provides water troughs suitable for sheep or any size of beef or dairy cattle, with different designs creating solutions that are suitable for use in external or internal settings.

One of the core design features of the Moore drinker range is the rounded corners. This enhances the strength of troughs, making them extremely robust and provide an additional animal safety feature.

All Moore Concrete drinking troughs are easily drained, having a suitably sized rubber bung positioned in the side wall. The troughs are designed to be used with both conventional and fast flow ballcocks.

For further information, contact Moore Concrete on (028) 2565 2566 Ext 1 or www.moore-concrete.com.