|Right and wrong layout for Cattle.
This diagram shows both the right and wrong layout for a curved race system. If the single file race is bent too sharply where it joins the crowd pen the cattle may refuse to enter because it looks like a dead end. Cattle standing in the round crowd pen must be able to see a minimum of three body lengths up the single file chute before the curve begins.
|Right and wrong layout for Pigs
This diagram shows both the right and wrong layout for pigs. If the single file race is bent too sharply where it joins the crowd pen, the pigs may refuse to enter. The pigs must be able to see a minimum of three body lengths up the race before it bends.
|Facility Type||Line Speed||Minimum length||Maximum length|
|Cattle Ranch and Properties||N/A||30 ft (9 m)||75 ft (23 m)|
|Cattle Slaughter Plants||Under 100/hour||40 ft (12.2 m)||75 ft (23 m)|
|Cattle Slaughter Plants||100 to 400/hour||80 ft (25 m)||200 ft (60 m)|
Loose shackle systems where pigs can be batched on the bleed rail can operate efficiently with shorter races than systems that have to operate with a continuous flow.
Continuous flow systems with shackles attached to a chain conveyor for pigs or sheep:
This compact design will fit in a small space and provide the advantages of a round crowd pen. The crowd pen is a full half circle to take advantage of the natural tendency of cattle to go back to where they came from. The outer fences are completely solid to block outside distractions. When a person with a flag stands on the small catwalk at the pivot point of the crowd gate, the cattle will circle around the person and enter the the single file chute. People who are operating the squeeze chute should work on the outer side of the squeeze chute. When the people are on the outer side, the slight bend in the single file chute will prevent incoming cattle from seeing the people who are operating the squeeze chute. To reduce costs, catwalks along the sides of the single file chute have been eliminated.
The inner fences are partially open so a person can work the flight zone while walking on the ground. The bottom portion should have a 4 ft (1.2 m ) high solid fence. This prevents the animal's feet from getting stuck in the fence. Since the cattle can see people through the partially open fence, people must stay out of this area. The handler should only enter this area when they need to move cattle into the squeeze chute. Another option with this design is to make all the fences completely solid and install catwalks. Catwalks must never be overhead. They must be located alongside the solid fence. The ideal height is to locate the catwalk so the top of the solid fence is at the waist height when a person stands on the catwalk.
More information and step by step instructions for building curved livestock handling facilities is in the book, Humane Livestock Handling, by Temple Grandin and Mark Deesing, published by Storey Publishing, North Adams, MA, USA.
Round crowd pen where the handler has the option of working at the pivot point of the crowd gate. The handler can stand in the black area and the cattle will circle around.
|Half Circle Tub and Race for One Person Operation
The handler stands at the pivot point of the round tub and the cattle circle around. In this position, the bubble formed by the collective flight zone facilitates movement into the single file race. The design of the curved race enables the handler to always be positioned along the inner radius. The outer perimeter fences and round tub should have solid sides. Catwalks can be eliminated if top position of fences on the inner fences are open. This enables a skilled handler to work the flight zone. For less skilled handlers who do not understand flight zone principles completely, solid sides are recommended.
|Round crowd pen where handler works at gate pivot point
This design eliminates the catwalks on the outer perimeter of the round crowd pen. All outer perimeter fences are solid to block distractions. After the handler has filled the crowd pen and placed the gate in the position shown, he moves to the pivot point and moves the cattle with a flag through the open fence. The cattle will naturally circle around him because they have a natural behavior to go back to where they came from. The handler should take advantage of natural following behavior by waiting until the single file race has space in it before filling the crowd pen. This design works best with two people. One handler works the inner radius of the curved single file race. The second person brings in cattle from holding pens and moves them through the round crowd pen.
Temple Grandin yard demo at Beef Works (YouTube Video): Video showing handling in a chute with a solid outer fence and an open inner fence.
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