cattle yard mistakes

The 5 Biggest Cattle Yard Design Mistakes & How to Avoid Them

When you’re designing a good cattle yard, it can provide a number of benefits to your farm, that make managing your herd a lot easier. The opposite is true as well, as a poorly designed cattle yard won’t just make life more difficult for your cows, but also your cattle handlers and even you. Unfortunately, many farmers make a number of big cattle yard design mistakes that increase the risk of injuries and accidents that can occur while handling cattle.

In order to help farmers, notice these risks in time, we’ve developed a list of the 5 biggest cattle yard design mistakes, with advice on how you can avoid them.

Poor Location

A cattle yard that’s built over unstable or sinking land will lack solid foundations, meaning that it will require regular, costly maintenance. Many farmers also make the more common mistake of fitting their cattle yards onto their existing structures and blocks of land. This is not ideal because it means, that their yard won’t be located centrally on their farm, making it difficult to manage, transport and access your cattle.

We suggest that farmers take the time to select the best location available so that their cattle yard doesn’t cost them more than it should.

Poor Layout

While poor location is a common mistake that farmers make, another one is layout. People don’t usually understand how much space they really have during the cattle yard design process, but the reality is, you can be really smart about how you use it.

By positioning gates and other elements of your cattle yard in the perfect location you can make efficient use of your land and increase the number of cows you can fit into a cattle yard. It is important that this layout is set to meet industry standards to prioritise the safety of your farmworkers. 

Failing to Consider Safety

Speaking of safety, it’s something that we can easily forget about when designing our cattle yards! Ensuring your cattle yard has capacity in mind is an important part of making sure your cows and workers are safe. As we’ve covered in a previous article, you should remember to make sure your exits are well designed too and are made of high-quality materials.

By following these steps, you can increase safety during the cattle yard design process.

Quality of Materials

Many farmers are still making the mistake of purchasing treated wooden fencing and fence posts for their cattle yards and fencing. This becomes a source of concern for a number of reasons. The first is the chance of wood splintering and injuring your cattle. The second is the longevity of your cattle yard materials. Even treated and ‘weather sealed’ wooden materials rot and expire much faster than durable materials like galvanised steel.

With farmers stretched to save every cent they can, investing in high-quality materials like galvanised steel can provide your cattle yard with bang for your buck.

Going it Alone

Farmers know a lot about cattle farming and cattle management, but it never hurts to get a second opinion when it comes to cattle yard design. There are farmers out there who think they know it all, only to wish they’d enlisted the help of an expert cattle yard design team and steel fabricator to help them get the job done.


Luckily, experts like Steel Supplies Charters Towers have decades of experience in designing and installing cattle yards for Australian farmers all across Queensland and the Northern Territory!

If you’d like advice on how to design your cattle yard or any information related to our range of steel products and solutions, contact the team at Steel Supplies Charters Towers.

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