Two day-long seminars focused on two of the most important barns on dairy farms will be presented on Jan. 25-26, in Madison, Wis. The seminars are “Designing Supplemental Positive Pressure Ventilation Systems for Calf Barns” and “Transition Cow Facility Planning.”

Ken Nordlund, DVM, Dipl. ABVP-Dairy, will present on designing supplemental positive pressure ventilation systems in calf barns on the first day, and then join Nigel Cook, BVSc, Cert CHP, DBR, MRCVS for the second day’s workshop to cover transition cow facility planning. Presented by The Dairyland Initiative, a program of the Food Animal Production Medicine Section of the School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Wisconsin-Madison, these workshops aim to equip veterinarians, consultants and producers with the planning skills necessary to help ensure healthy and productive environments for nursing calves and transition cows.

Calf Barn Ventilation – Jan 25
While natural ventilation and negative pressure mechanical ventilation are the most widely used systems for nursery and growing calf barns, both have problems that can be minimized with supplemental positive pressure tube systems. In this workshop, Nordlund will teach how to design systems to deliver appropriate volumes of fresh air to calves without creating drafts. Problems with fluttering tubes, uneven distribution of air along the tube, and failure to inflate will be reviewed, along with practical ideas for tube location and construction materials. This training aims to equip consultants with the ability to improve air quality in calf barns through improved ventilation and other common management and building design problems that contribute to poor air hygiene and increased risk for calf pneumonia.

Calf barn ventilation program participants will receive and learn to use The Dairyland Initiative's Supplemental Positive Pressure Ventilation Tube Calculator to create specifications for example barns and troubleshoot existing systems. Participants should bring a computer to the workshop that can run an Excel spreadsheet.

Transition Cow Facilities – Jan 26
How do you ask your lender for money to build a barn and not add any additional milking cows? Using the new Dairyland Initiative program, which stores in one easy to access location all the information needed to build or remodel a new cow barn to fit the cows’ needs, Drs. Nigel Cook and Ken Nordlund will walk participants through the steps needed to plan facilities that make transition cows happy, healthy and productive. The Wisconsin Blueprint will serve as a guide to lay out the floor plan of a new facility, while Virtual Tours of existing barns will be used to share new ideas on how to accomplish welfare-friendly concepts. Cook and Nordlund will demonstrate how the Transition Cow Index can be used to help create a partial budget to show that the decision makes economic sense. Participants of this workshop should also bring a computer that can run an Excel spreadsheet and has wireless internet capability. Internet access will be provided at the conference center.

The seminars will be held at the Sheraton Madison Hotel, 706 John Nolen Drive in Madison. The schedule will begin each day with registration at 9:30 am, with the workshop starting at 10 a.m. and concluding at 4 p.m.

Participants may register for one or both days of workshops. Registration fees include proceedings, veterinary CE credits from the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Veterinary Medicine, lunch and refreshments. A brochure with additional details and a registration form can be accessed at Only 40 seats are available for each workshop, so register soon online at, by FAX of the registration form to (608) 890-1774, or by phone at (608) 265-5206. Registration questions may be directed to Karl Olson, C.E. Program Assistant, at (608) 265-5206 or by e-mail at