Sustainable farming encompasses a wide range of practices and principles; combining environmental stewardship with profitability and ensuring that the family farm will be there for generations to come.


Demonstration Solar Watering System

In 2006 LARA constructed a portable solar watering system with funding from the Alberta Stewardship Network. The unit, on a pull trailer, contains solar panels, trough, pump, batteries, float and hoses. It can water 150 head of cattle with a 15 foot lift, or 200 head with a 10 foot lift. It can be used for any surface body of water such as a dugout or creek.

This system is available for a free trial and allows the producer a chance to see if an alternative watering system will work for their situation.  Call the LARA office to book the system if you are interested.


Off-Site Watering

Water is essential for all life and is extremely important in livestock health and weight gain. An average cow drinks 40 to 60 liters of water per day! Animal health and performance are superior when given access to clean water. Research has shown that when cows have the option of drinking out of a trough or along an unfenced creek, 80% of cows would use the trough. Access to clean water increases animal performance and has shown improved growth in yearlings by as much as 23%. By providing them with an offsite watering source on a dugout weight gain improves over 3%.

Offsite watering systems come in many forms and can be built to suit your operation. They can incorporate many different power sources from direct hook up to lines, solar, wind or a combination. They can also include animal powered sources such as nose pumps or a gravity feed. Troughs can range from plastic, cement, rubber, metal or anything that can hold water. Offsite systems can be used on wells, dugouts, or natural water bodies such as creeks, lakes and sloughs.

Offsite systems change the distribution of cattle and prevent direct access of livestock to water sources, protecting and improving water quality. For more information please contact the LARA office.

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