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Published February 03, 2014, 10:37 AM

ND company handling hydraulic calf table

Wayne Mittleider’s customers told him they want a hydraulic calf table. The customer is always right, so Mittleider went out and got what they wanted.

By: Jonathan Knutson, Agweek

MINOT, N.D. — Wayne Mittleider’s customers told him they want a hydraulic calf table. The customer is always right, so Mittleider went out and got what they wanted.

“I did some research, and this is what I came up with,” he says.

Mittleider’s company, M & M Ag Sales & Service of Tappen, N.D., now handles a hydraulic calf table that he says is safer and easier for both animals and humans. Operated by hand controls, the device locks calves in a chute, grabs calves by the body (not the neck), and secures them on a metal table. Once there, the calves can be given shots or otherwise worked on.

Typically, depending on the nature of the work, a calf can be in and out in less than a minute.

The tables, manufactured by BZ Welding of Watertown, S.D., aren’t intended for newborn calves.

Mittleider exhibited the hydraulic calf table at the annual KMOT Ag Expo in Minot, N.D., where he talked with Agweek on Jan. 29.

His company works with customers in North Dakota, South Dakota, western Minnesota, eastern Montana and southern Canada. The business was started in the early 1980s by Mittleider’s father, Israel. Today, it handles livestock and cattle handling equipment.

Normally, ranchers who work with large numbers of calves at the same time use some system of corrals and gates. The process can be stressful for both animals and humans.

“With this, the calves seem to be a little more calm,” Wayne Mittleider says.

Mittleider cites four reasons for his optimism about sales of the hydraulic calf lift:

• Cattle prices remain relatively high.

• Ranching operations are getting bigger and handling more animals.

• Ranches and farms have a tougher time finding help.

• Many farmers and ranchers have reached an age where they’re looking to reduce the physical demands of the job.

“I really think this is something they can put to good use,” Mittleider says.

The device, which weighs 4,200 pounds, costs $4,999, plus $1,000 for an electric motor or $2,000 for a gas motor.

More information: 701-327-8157 or 701-471-8799.

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