Sprinkling cattle for control of heat stress
S. R. Morrison, University of California
R. L. Givens, U. S. Department of Agriculture
G. P. Lofgreen, Imperial Valley Field Station
California Agriculture 27(8):7-9. DOI: 10.3733/ca.v027n08p7.
Sprinkling cattle, under shades, during the summer in the Imperial Valley for 1 minute every 30 minutes when the temperature was above 80°F (27°C)—resulted in significantly higher feed consumption and rate of gain, compared with cattle under shades but not sprinkled. Efficiency of feed conversion was not significantly improved over that of uncooled cattle (although the sprinkling treatment was favored). Sprinkling was as effective as a refrigerated air conditioned barn at 75°F (24°C) in one trial, and was more effective during a second trial. Sprinkling and refrigeration promoted greater comfort, as indicated by the prevention of increases in respiratory rate and body temperature observed in the afternoon with control cattle. Both uncooled and cooled cattle consumed more feed and gained more weight when alloted 40 sq ft per head of space than with 20 sq ft.
S. R. Morrison is Associate Professor of Agricultural Engineering, University of California, Davis; R. L. Givens is Agricultural Engineer, AERD, U. S. Department of Agriculture, Davis; G. P. Lofgreen is Professor of Animal Science, Imperial Valley Field Station, El Centro;