A ONE-SIZE-FITS-ALL turnover cow crush developed by a father and son was exhibited for the first time at the Royal Cornwall Show in June 2012.

James and Charlie Davey, who demonstrated type one of their system at the show in 2011 and received a positive response, have now perfected type two, which has been tried and tested on-farm.

Charlie, a herdsman with 30 years’ experience in Cornwall, Devon, Dorset and Sussex, has designed the crush with two primary objectives in mind.

“The cow’s comfort is the most important thing and then it has to be good and safe for us to work with,” he said.
Like other turnover crushes, the cow is held steady and is turned on its side so its hooves can be attended to.

The Davey crush lays the cow down at a 20-degree angle. Charlie said: “This is much less stressful for the cow and, with the cow in a calm state, it is easier for us to investigate their hooves and trim and treat as needed.”

The whole contact area – platform, uprights and bars – is heavily padded and the crush will take any size of beast, from a Dexter to a fully grown Charolais bull.

Permanently mounted on the back of a lorry, the crush can operate immediately it arrives on site, in a barn, a yard or, if required, in an open field.

Everything is powered directly from the vehicle, from hydraulics to electric grinders.

“The old crush created great interest last year so we are expecting an even keener reaction this year,” he said.

“We have always used turnover crushes and, if we had bought a new one, we would have changed it anyway so we thought we might as well build it ourselves.

“What we wanted was what was best for the cows.”

Geoff Hollow, who farms a pedigree Limousin herd at Chytodden, near St Ives, said professional care of the cows’ hooves was an essential element of raising them in a healthy and marketable state.

He said: “This is the third year we have used this system and it is certainly stress-free for the animals, and that’s important.

“A lot of crushes can’t take the size of animal that this one can. When the 1,300-kilo bull went in, it rolled him over like a piece of putty.”

Charlie is based in Dorset and James in Saltash.

Read more: http://www.thisiscornwall.co.uk/Family-set-improved-cow-crush/story-15292190-detail/story.html#ixzz2PJT0redC
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