Mike Pavletich says the diversification from sheep and beef began with the wintering of dairy cows in the 1990’s and then, in 2006, the family decided to convert 450 hectares to dairy with Equity Partners.
“The size and type of farm dairy was a critical part of that decision. We were moving into a new industry so we spent some time looking at a range of dairies and talking to the farmers who used them.
“We were looking at milking 1300 cows so it was important to have a dairy which was technologically advanced yet easy to operate and with good cow through-put. We eventually decided on a 60 bail concrete Orbit rotary platform and machinery from Waikato Milking Systems
“10 years on and it’s never missed a beat so when it came to converting a further 180 hectares to enable us to operate two dairy units milking 2000 cows, it was a no brainer to replicate the original shed.”
Aside from the rotation of the platform and yard layout, the new dairy – commissioned in 2014 – is a replica of the existing Waikato Milking Systems’ 60 bail Orbit rotary.
“The platforms run opposite ways in each shed but, in contrast to the square yard in the original shed, we opted for a circular yard in the new build to improve cow flow. The square yard has its place though, especially during early calving, with its heifer training race.”
In the 2015/2016 season Station Peak Dairy milked a total of 2,170 cows across two farms on the 630 hectare dairy platform.
“We operate two dairy units of 315 hectares, each milking 1080 cows in two herds.
“Having two identical sheds means that if anything drastic happens in the calving shed, or we get under pressure, we can simply swap out from the other shed. The similarity of the sheds also means staff and cows transition well from one to the other.”
|Dairy Types||2 Orbit Concrete Rotaries|
|Herd Size||2100 Cows|
2 x 60 Bails