In this week’s Buildings Focus,Agriland.在Co. Tripperary的Thurles之外乘坐博罗斯之旅，查看新的拨款规范五架纸板。
Pierce, who runs his own Agri Consultancy business in Thurles, runs a store to beef enterprise, which sees him buy in Hereford, Angus and Friesian steers in around 450kg and finish them at 28-30 months-of-age.
The farm, which is in one block consisting of 100ha, had been understocked, but over the last few years Pierce has increased the farm’s stocking rate and this was one of the reasons for building the new shed – in order to have enough winter accommodation.
He has experimented with a couple of different systems over the last few years but he has now settled on the system he has in place now which he says is “easy to run, not time-consuming and simple”.
谈到Agriland., Pierce said: “I was undecided for two or three years about whether or not to build a new housing facility.
“我已经拥有了三个纸上的牛，但是我觉得赠款是那里，事实上有一个大块地面，当时我被吸引地跑了牛，我说我说’d go for it and build a new slatted shed.
With the new shed I can house a further 50-60 cattle. I winter house about 250 head and buy a further 50 or so in the spring to run on grass, with the plan of finishing 300 cattle by the autumn time.
Site and layout
The site where the shed is located required a good bit of fill, which was probably one of the only costs Pierce underestimated.
Fogarty Concrete then came in after and put in the 16ft six slatted tank, while the shed itself was sourced and erected by O’Dywer Steel.
Features of the unit
There are about 10-12 cattle in each pen, depending on size, there is only 10 in some of the pens carrying heavier bullocks, while there are 12 in some which contain slightly lighter cattle.
The only reason Pierce can push that higher stocking rate in each pen is because of the inclusion of the concrete feeding trough which goes the length of the unit.
The steers in the shed are fed silage and meal. Pierce said that when it comes to feeding meal, six can eat at the front feed face, while the other six cattle in the pen can eat at the back of the pen where the concrete trough is.
He said: “The system I operate, it means there isn’t an awful amount that has to be done with the age of bullocks I keep like there would be with weanlings say.
If I have to dose them or anything like that, I can let them in one end of the shed and they can make their way down to the far end of the shed.
“我星期一到星期五九到五，所以如果必须用牛完成一些事情，我需要尽可能快速有效地做 - 特别是因为有些日子，我经常不得不和我一起工作。“
The way sheds are designed and built nowadays, the emphasis placed on ventilation is of utmost importance.
There’s a nice balance between it being airy and warm. Vented sheeting was placed at the back of the shed, while a 450mm gap was left between the vent sheeting and the roof to further assist airflow.
As well as that, the hanging steel barriers at the back of the shed can be opened or closed and offer another entry and escape route for air.
These barriers are generally left open most of the time in order to feed the cattle meal along the concrete trough.
The high pitched-roof also helps to keep the shed nice and airy and prevent it from becoming too warm and stuffy.
Skylights were also incorporated into the design to brighten up the shed, while LED lights were also installed. Two yard lights were also placed at either end of the shed.
Feeding meal over putting in mats
“If I was finishing bulls I would say different because I feel you need to have mats under them but with the bullocks I keep, they aren’t obviously as heavy as bulls and they seem to be doing nicely getting a bit of meal and good silage.”
Pierce was able to avail of the Targeted Agricultural Modernisation Scheme (TAMS II).
I know beef isn’t in a great place and hasn’t been for quite awhile but I wouldn’t have gone ahead and done it if I knew I couldn’t make it back.