Waterman Dairy Facility

Waterman Dairy Facility

The Waterman Dairy Facility maintains a 100-cow Jersey herd. Profits from the sale of high-quality, Grade A milk help support the dairy, which encompasses 122 acres of corn for silage and 45 acres of pasture. Milking is done twice daily in a double-eight herringbone parlor, and milk cows are housed in a free-stall barn with access to pasture. Replacement heifers and dry cows are kept in loose housing or are able to feed on rotationally grazed pasture. All heifer calves are raised on the farm in calf hutches while being fed milk. Waterman cattle are recognized for their high genetic merit and type, and detailed records aid in research and management.

Dairy parlor at Waterman dairy


Students at The Ohio State University have access to the Waterman Dairy Facility through classes, research, and employment. Student employees and interns assist with daily activities to gain experience in general-farm and dairy-herd management. The College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences’ Department of Animal Sciences—along with the Ohio State College of Veterinary Medicine—use the dairy for the following classes: • Introduction to Animal Sciences • Dairy Herd Management • Grazing Management • Manure Management • Palpation Lab • Dairy Cow Lab • Dairy Judging Class • Animal Handling Class


Research at the Waterman Dairy Facility encompasses studies pertaining to nutrition, behavior, milk quality, heifer development, livestock emissions, reproduction, and cattle health.

Dairy heifers on pasture
Family meeting cows at Waterman Field Day


The Waterman Dairy Facility hosts 7,000–8,000 visitors annually. Elementary schools, youth groups, senior citizens, and industry professionals can tour the dairy to learn how Waterman manages its herd from calves to mature cows, and how parlor systems are used to comfortably and efficiently milk cows. Visitors also learn about integration of pasture management and heifer growing, as well as the future of the dairy industry. • The dairy cattle are well accustomed to tours. Their comfort level, combined with their natural Jersey curiosity and docile temperament, allow for visitor-animal interaction. • The dairy markets cattle through both private and public sales, selling cattle to dairy farms across the United States.