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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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Synchronization and artificial insemination (A.I.) are effective tools to build a better herd. However they are only as effective as the planning and implementation put into both of those programs.

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As we move into the hottest time of the year, it is important to reevaluate the effectiveness of your cooling system. Research from the University of Florida has shown 15 to 22 percent reductions in milk yield from summer heat stress as well as poor reproductive efficiency.

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Feeding and management practices for dairy calves directly impact not only their survival, but just as importantly, their future milk production. Recent studies which have followed calves through their first lactation have shown a positive relationship between early-life nutrient intake and first-lactation milk production.

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Lameness continues to be a major welfare issue for dairy cows. In addition to the reduction in performance, the visual image of lame cows on farms can lead to a negative public perception of dairy farming. A survey in Minnesota found the prevalence of lame cows (those scoring a 3 or greater on a 1-to-5 scale) ranged from 3 to 50 percent on 53 farms.

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Most business operators would agree that it’s getting tougher out there – every day. It doesn’t matter whether it’s the local grocery store, a machinery dealer or your own farm operation – an environment of continuous change and turmoil is making it harder and harder to compete and succeed in business.

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Lameness is a common and costly disorder affecting dairy cattle. Freestall housing systems are designed for ease of management but are also associated with a greater risk of hoof injury and disease leading to lameness. For example, the use of concrete floors, zero-grazing and uncomfortable stalls are all well-known risk factors.

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