June is dairy month, and to celebrate, here are 20 moovelous fun facts about dairy cows and dairy farms. So grab some ice cream (with whipped cream of course) and enjoy!
1. Cows (almost) have 360 degree panoramic vision.
This is because their eyes are on the sides of their head, and have horizontal pupils.
2. A dairy cow produces 125 pounds of saliva a day.
3. The average dairy cow produces 70 pounds of milk every day...which equates to eight gallons.
4. One dairy cow creates four full-time jobs in the local community.
It's not just those on the farm...This includes milk haulers, workers at processing plants, veterinarians, nutritionists...
5. The average cow drinks 30 to 50 gallons of water a day.
That's enough to fill (or even overflow) a bathtub!
6. A cow will eats about 100 pounds of feed a day.
And I thought I ate a lot...
7. 99 percent of dairy farms are family owned and operated.
8. The cow has one stomach with four compartments.
The rumen, which can hold 50 gallons of food to be digested; the reticulum, collecting any hardware accidentally eaten; the omasum; and the abomasum, which is the closest to a our human stomach.
9. The amount of calcium in one eight oz. glass of milk is equivalent to 1/4 cup of broccoli, or seven oranges, or six slices of wheat bread.
I think the glass of milk sounds the most appetizing.
10. The average American drinks 25 gallons of milk every year.
That's 400 glasses of milk.
11. One gallon of milk weighs 8.6 pounds.
12. It takes 21 pounds of whole milk to create one pound of butter.
13. It takes three gallons of milk to make one gallon of ice cream.
Yay for ice cream!
14. Cows can smell things from six miles away.
15. Cows have 32 teeth, which are only found on the bottom of their mouth.
16. Cows move their jaws 40,000 times a day.
They do this because they regurgitate their food, and chew their cud (or regurgitated food) for about eight hours a day.
17. There are 60,000 dairy farms in the United States, with an average herd size of 135 cows.
18. California is the top milk producing state.
19. Every year, dairy cows in the United States produce 21 billion gallons of milk.
That's a lot of ice cream!
20. The federal government regulates the milk price.
Currently, farmers are getting paid an average of $15 per hundred weight. (Dairy farmers get paid by the pound, not by the gallon.) 20. When you buy a gallon of fat free milk at the store for $3.89 (on average), the farmer only gets about $1.32. And don't forget that the cream from the same gallon of milk went to make other dairy products such as ice cream and butter.
Hopefully you learned something (and enjoyed your ice cream). Next time you go to the store (since I'm sure you now need to restock on ice cream) don't forget to thank your local dairy farmers!
And the dairy cows.