"The parlour has been a great investment and one person could comfortably milk 360 cows on their own"
When the time came for the Hanrahan family to invest and upgrade their parlour, they placed strong emphasis on improving efficiency and reducing labour.
"The choice of milking parlour was a business-critical decision; but – along each step of the way – DeLaval project managers and support staff are there to assist 24/7 with the training and on how to get the best use of the parlour."
“The parlour is capable of milking 280 cows per hour currently and 300 cows per hour during the fall of the year. It really has taken the work out of milking and it provides us with so much information on each individual cow”
After installation was completed, all of the cows in the herd were tagged with HDX (electronic identification) tags and each cow’s number was inputted into a computer within the parlour.
Through the use of a drafting gate, the Hanrahans are able to draft out cows prior to milking. This proves very beneficial in terms of managing freshly-calved cows and those with cell count issues.
The parlour is equipped with a host of additional features, including: yield monitoring; feed-to-yield; automatic cluster removers; and a warning system.
“The yield monitoring is beneficial, as it informs you if a cow is producing lower-than-expected milk yields; it’s a great early warning for a cow bulling or a cow with the early stages of mastitis,”
Along with the parlour, the Hanrahans have also installed a DeLaval Teat Spray Robot (TSR) – the first of its kind to be installed in Ireland or the UK
John is extremely happy with the performance of the piece of kit, adding: “It’s incredibly accurate due to its 3D camera and it is as good as having a man standing there post-spraying the cows.
“It grants huge savings in labour costs and the return on investment is exceptional. We have the TSR programmed to apply 10ml of spray and it never misses a teat or a cow; it’s truly exceptional.
“The whole operation is really simple; I wouldn’t change and I wouldn’t go back,” he concluded.