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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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The planning, building and start-up of a new (or retrofit, rebuild or extension) milking parlor is a uniquely exciting, challenging and stressful event. Financial deadlines are real. Construction fatigue is real.

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In many parts of the U.S., small-grain forages are increasing in popularity and can make excellent feed for milk cow rations when harvested at the correct stage of maturity and put up at proper moisture levels.

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Forages are the backbone of dairy rations on most farms. Forages impact dry matter intake (undigested neutral detergent fiber or uNDF), rate of passage (particle size), rumen environment (stable rumen pH) and economic feed programs (reducing the need for purchased grain and protein supplements).

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While beet pulp is well-known for being an energy concentrate that cows love, feed beets have yet to be discovered in a big way.

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Milkfat and protein yield are the major contributors to the price producers receive for milk in most Federal Milk Market Orders. This underlines the importance of focusing on increasing the yield of milkfat and protein and not milk yield per se in order to maximize milk price and income.

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Incorporating soybeans and their byproducts into dairy cattle rations is a fairly common practice. Soybeans are an excellent source of essential amino acids and complement most forages, but they do have some limitations.

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