CA: It’s time to winterize!

Deanne Meyer, PhD UCCE Livestock Waste Management Specialist Department of Animal Science, UC Davis

It’s that time of the year again! With less daylight comes the reminder to prepare for winter. Now is the time to think “winter” as you drive around the dairy. Here’s an abbreviated to-do list. A quick review of your Operation and Maintenance Plan will help complete your dairy’s specific preparation list.

✓ Pile, remove and haul or cover solid manure from corrals

✓ Fill low spots in corrals

✓ Check gutters, down spouts, attach flexible hose if needed

✓ Check generators to be sure they are functional

✓ Evaluate pond storage capacity

✓ Remember to take monthly pond photos (in the Valley) or annual pond photos (North Coast)

✓ Have winter storm sampling kit available

✓ Input remaining nutrient management data for your summer crop (irrigations and harvest data)

✓ Transition from monthly to weekly documentation that production area is clean and no off-site discharge of manure (solids or liquids) is occurring

✓ Begin keeping records for each field for winter forage nutrient management

Here’s hoping our rains come when needed and with just the right amount of water!

This information is reproduced with permission from the California Dairy Quality Assurance Update, the October newsletter