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Our Facility

The OSU Ferguson Family Dairy Center encompasses approximately 300 acres of pasture with an additional 80 acres of tillable land nearby.
The freestall barn houses the entire milking herd. It features sand bedding, a robotic milker, and designated pre-fresh, maternity, fresh, and calf managing areas.  Waste management system utilizes a pop-up flushing system with a solids separator and sand settling lane for sand recycling.
The milking facility is a double-six herringbone parlor with automated cow identification, milk yield recording, and milking unit detachers. 

Our Purpose

The OSU Ferguson Family Dairy Center is primarily used for teaching students, research, and providing important information to the industry. The dairy provides hands-on experience and research opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students. 
The new robotic milker allows cattle to be milked whenever they want. Visitors can come to the center to see the process (and our cattle) up close. Schools schedule field trips with us throughout the year as a learning opportunity for their students.

About Us

Our Technology

As a land-grant university, we think it is important to be on the forefront of new dairy technology. Our milking parlor is equipped with an automated system that recognizes each cow and provides detailed information about their milk. We also have a new robotic milker that allows cattle to get milked whenever they want.

The Insentec feeding system in the freestall barn has 16 feeders and two waterers. This system can record the feed and water intake for up to 32 cows. A data center collects information from the Insentec system daily.

Our Herd

The dairy herd consists of approximately 60 Holstein cows and 40 Jersey cows that are milked twice daily. Cows are fed a total mixed ration containing alfalfa hay, whole cottonseed, and concentrate (including corn grain). 

Holsteins average 70 pounds of milk per day with 4% fat test whereas Jersey cows average 45 pounds of milk per day with 5% fat test. The facility produces around 2,200,000 pounds of milk a year.

The Holstein and Jersey cows are housed separately in the freestall barn, which allows them to rest in areas designed for their breed size. Brushes, cooling fans, ventilation, and a mist system keep the cows comfortable.

Our Students

The dairy provides hands-on experience and research opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students. They get access to facilities, technology, and training that prepares them for work in the dairy industry. Students can get involved in various aspects of our operation, including milking, feeding, maintenance, health and wellness, data analysis, and research projects.

Helms Hall, student housing, provides student workers with modern, comfortable living at the dairy.

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