One simple measure to boost milk yields
A fact often overlooked by Irish dairy farmers is that improving water supply can result in an increase in milk yield.
A dairy cow can be satisfied long before she is full, so if the water is slow to come through to the trough, she may be quite contented, but milk yield can suffer by over 20pc.
One trial on water on display at the Teagasc Moorepark 2017 open day investigated the impact of pipe size and type of ballcock had on the flow of water.
Four 150 gallon troughs were set up each fed from a buffer tank at equal pressure (20 PSI).
Two troughs were fed with 12.5mm (half inch) piping and the other two with 25mm (inch piping).
Varying jet sizes were inserted in the ballcocks and the flow rates were measured, the outcome of which are outlined on the table 1.
It should be noted that when it comes to jet size, the high pressure jet has the smallest hole and the low pressure jet the biggest. Two different jet sizes were installed in trough 3 during the day, hence the reason table 1 shows five troughs.
A flow rate of 0.2litres/cow/minute is the required flow rate to have adequate water supply on a dry summers day.