criteria for covering fully slatted pens in beef fattening
criteria for covering fully slatted pens in beef fattening

Criteria for covering fully slatted pens in beef fattening

Lower Saxony (Germany) has enacted an animal protection guideline for fattening beef husbandry. Other Federal States might quickly follow with husbandry requirements.

Requirements for the lying area in fully slatted pens according to the animal protection guideline:

  • floor with elastic rubber or bedding

  • Minimum floor space requirement in new constructions of one-area and two-area fully slatted pens with rubber flooring depending on the animals’ weight:

pre-fattening fattening finishing
Ø life weight (kg) 250 - 449 450 - 649 ≥ 650
total floor space/animal (m²) 2.5 3.0 3.5
thereof lying area/animal (m²)* 1.5 2.0 2.5

* the lying area must be equipped with rubber flooring at the least

Why rubber mats?

fully slatted pens are optimally fully covered with rubber matsScientific studies have proved animals to clearly prefer the soft rubber mats. Practical experience confirms this. Furthermore, they offer clear advantages for health and economy.

The floor design makes it possible to control the animals. They prefer lying on the mats (comfortable and heat insulating), but they also like being active on the rubber mats (surefootedness).

→ Therefore we recommend fully covered pens.

 

In the case of partially covered pens, lower rank animals are often ousted. This is particularly true for pens where the complete lying area cannot be used for the intended purpose as the animals in the feeding place stand with their hind legs on the mats of the lying area.in case of partially covered pens the bulls should not stand on the mats with hind legsin case of partially covered fully slatted pens with rubber mats the bulls should stand either completely or not at all on the mats

Planning aid for feeding place depth:

  • Pre-fattening: approx. 1.70 m
  • Fattening: approx. 1.80 m
  • Finishing: approx. 1.90 m

The dimensions may vary depending on the breed.

Important: When feeding, the animals should stand either completely or not at all on the mat!

This is also important for long-term functionality.

Source: Unter-AG Mastrinder Niedersachsen: Tierschutzleitlinie für die Mastrinderhaltung, 2017

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