Providing Cattle With Shaded Pens Can Significantly Influence Productivity
The vast majority of cattle pens in the United States currently operate without the benefit of a shade structure, as previous studies were unable to accurately determine the effect that shade structures have on productivity. Recent studies out of Australia have demonstrated that there is a significant relationship between providing shade for cattle and positive productivity gains. At Shade ‘N Net, we recognize the importance of protecting cattle from excessive heat exposure while also influencing cattle productivity through the use of a shade structure.
Minimize Risk of Heat Stress
Australian feedlots have been widely employing the use of shade structures for over a decade, and there have been many reported benefits. One of the reasons that these feedlots initially installed shade structures was to minimize the risk of heat-related incidents experienced by the cattle due to the following:
• High temperature
• High humidity
• Low air circulation
Preventing these issues, which can sometimes lead to mortality, is an important measure of protection for any feedlot to implement.
Increased Productivity During Hot Seasons
During periods of high heat, there is a significant impact on cattle that have access to shade structures versus those that do not. The Australian study found that the difference in body temperature during times of high heat was profound, as cattle with access to shade averaged 104 degrees Fahrenheit while those without shade access averaged 106 degrees Fahrenheit. The group with access to shade also saw productivity improvements in both feed intake and feed efficiency.
Return on Investment Justifies Expense
According to Dr. John Gaughan, a pen shade and cattle heat stress expert from the University of Queensland, there needs to be only two to three hot seasons over a 10-year period to justify the expense of installing a shade structure over cattle pens. In certain parts of the United States, hot seasons are all but guaranteed each and every year, and even milder climates seem more than likely to have at least the two or three hot seasons referenced by Dr. Gaughan.
Our products carry warranties that should only promote further confidence in the return on investment generated from the installation of a Shade ‘N Net shade structure. The steel components of the shade structures we provide are protected by a 20-year warranty, while the netting carries an eight-year warranty. Any cattle pen that utilizes our products for the sake of creating shade to positively influence cattle productivity can do so confidently with the knowledge that are products are built to last and are protected by a solid warranty. For more information on our shade structures, please call us at (800) 290-3387.