ESACB

The Agricultural School of the Polytechnic Institute of Castelo Branco (ESACB) has a cowshed for 32 dairy cows witch, with other buildings, that form the Cattle Production Sector of the School. This Sector, when solicited, gives aid to the different courses ministered in this school, being also used for the development of research and/or experimentation projects.

The constitution of the dairy cattle effective was started on May 1985 with the acquisition of 25 imported dairy cows being 10 of British Friesian breed, proceeding from United Kingdom, and 15 Holstein Friesian breed, proceeding from Germany. All of them descendant from mothers and grandmothers with milk productions higher than 5000kg on 305 days and milk fat higher to 3,8% on the first lactation and 6000 to 7000kg with milk fat of 3,5% on the following ones. After January 1986, arrived to ESACB 5 more Frísia Portuguesa heifers from the Estação Zootécnica Nacional - Portugal. The effective was then completed with 30 cows.

In 1996 the effective was all replaced by 20 pregnant Holstein Friesian heifers, proceeding from Netherlands, witch originates the actual effective.


Physical Nature of the Sector
In physical terms the cattle breed sector is composed by a cowshed, a steershed, a covered area for straw and hay storage, one retention sinkhole, three trench siloes and silo.


Cowshed
The cowshed has capacity for 32 dairy cows and is divided on seven areas:
- slipping zone with a total area of 150m2 divided on 32 individual boxes separated by bay composed by galvanized pipes;
- exercise zone with an area of 182m2 limited by a collective manjer with individualized access by the utilization of a barrier from “yoke” kind;
- milking parlour “tandem 2 x 2” with 4 independent milking units, where the cows are milked twice a day. Appending to this room is located a milk storage room whit a 2 000 liters refrigeration tank;
- birthing room with an area of 8m2;
- calfshed with 8m2 having 5 individual boxes.
- cleaning room with a total area of 16m2 witch is also used as a place for preparation of milk replacer;
- backup zone with an area of 11,5m2 wich includes an office and a toilet with shower and dressing room.

Steershed
The steers building has a total covered area of 151m2 with 6 lodging boxes for groups of 8 to 5 steers according to their age, respectively 3 or 8 months.

Straw and hay storage area
It is located between the cowshed and the steers building and it has a covered area of 149m2.

Retention sinkhole
Aseptic sinkhole with the capacity of 104m3. The liquid manure retained is distributed using an appropriate cistern, on the pasture and other lands used for forage production at the School.

The trench siloes
3 siloes built in reinforced concrete with capacity for 100 ton of silage each, usually corn and/or sorghum silage.

Silo
Silo with capacity for 11 m3 of specific commercial concentrate .

Other backup areas

Pasture and meadow
The sector uses an area of 9,5ha of irrigated land and about 14ha of unirrigated land. These areas are divided by fences of galvanized guard net with 1,24m of height. All the parks have watering place with water from public system.

Small center of artificial insemination (AI)
At ESACB exists a small center of AI with a liquid nitrogen container where the semen from tested bulls is stored. It also exists all the material needed for AI operations. Nowadays AI are done by the responsible person.

ACTUAL CATTLE EFECTIVE

In August 2017 the cattle effective of ESACB was formed by the following 42 animals:
- 22 milking cows
- 3 dry cow
- 9 pregnant heifers
- 8 female calves for rearing

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