Last summer, the three partners of the GAEC La Bréquinière doubled their number of calves by building additional 312 head housing. And inevitably, their straw bedding requirements have increased. For a few months, their Raptor did the job, but finally, they decided to upgrade machines.
Before taking the decision, the three farmers took the time to study all the possibilities.
After watching videos on Youtube and on Lucas G's website, they decided to go and see a machine in operation at another farm. For Romain Poupelin, one of the partners, "it's important to see the machine in real life and to get feedback from someone who uses it. You don't buy without looking at it, without knowing how it works. If there's something you haven't seen, you're disappointed. The farmer we visited had owned his for only 2 months, but we quickly saw the advantages.
What convinced them? The capacity (18 m3) and the fact that they could load up to four bales of straw in bulk. With other brands, they were talking about a capacity of four bales, but it was more tedious: you had to position them in the machine, get into the straw blower to remove the strings, so in terms of practicality and time saving, it was less interesting," explains Romain. Now, what has really improved is that we place our bales in the muck house, we cut the strings beforehand, then we simply load them in with a telehandler.
Greater convenience and, above all, a significant time saving.
600 bulls bedded in 15 minutes
"For our two buildings, I use four bales, two bales in each building. Once the Castor 185 is loaded, I take 15 minutes to do the straw bedding for the two buildings. Then I have to add 15 minutes to prepare the bales and load them for the next day. In 30 minutes, everything is done," says Romain.
And this winter, when the cows and heifers are no longer on pasture "I'm going to use six bales a day. We have estimated that it will take us 25 minutes to do everything. So that's time saved for looking after the cows and calves," he adds.
Despite its large size, this high volume straw blower is surprisingly easy to operate. This is due in part to the Intuitive Pro Control. Romain explains: "I had barely used it for 15 metres in the building and I already got well acquainted with all of the controls of the machine! With the controller, you can operate the floor and floor speed, and there is a joystick to manage the chute. I showed my colleagues how it worked and in 5 minutes it was ready to go".