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Peruse practical information for the dairy producer on essential topics including management, A.I. and breeding, new technology, and feed and nutrition.

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It is not uncommon for a producer to state, “I have been putting high emphasis on genetics within my herd, but the cows just don’t seem to be at the performance level they should be.”

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During challenging times, dairy producers are thinking about ways to improve their situation and maximize the benefits of the investments already in place, like long-day lighting (LDL) systems. While known to boost milk production, some dairy producers may not realize the payback on LDL only happens with proper timing of lights and recommended management for both lactating and dry cows.

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Most days your automatic scraper system chugs along in the barn, doing its job. Until it doesn’t. Then, it’s an emergency call to your dealer and extra shipping and service fees for replacement parts. All the while manure is building up, impacting cow cleanliness and milk quality.

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• Corn silage should be harvested at 35 percent dry matter (65 percent moisture) and one-half to three-fourths milk line. When results from numerous studies were combined and analyzed, harvesting corn silage at 40 percent dry matter or higher resulted in decreased milk yields of 4.4 pounds of milk per cow per day.

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Starting a dairy involves long hours, backbreaking work and cool-headedness in unexpected emergencies. And in a market with exceptionally low milk prices, building a dairy from the ground up is no easy feat – especially when you’re in your 20s.

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Whether expanding, starting up a robotic dairy using first-lactation animals, or transitioning parlor or tiestall cows to a robot, many dairy farmers run into the same problem: There are some cows that struggle to adapt to the new system. 

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