Current Progressive Dairy digital edition
Advertisement
breadcrumbs

Topics

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

LATEST

Visiting other dairies, I’ve noticed that oftentimes, the heifer program gets overlooked. Sure, the silage looks great, the office is spotless and the cows are eating a nice ration. But the heifers fend for themselves in overcrowded pens eating throwbacks from the cows (that is, if the dairyman doesn’t consider this “wasting” it). When confronted with this issue, the usual response is, “Well, they’ll get the good stuff when they start making money.” Granted, especially during times of low milk prices, cutbacks have to start somewhere.

Read more ...

When dairy producers have a record of the mastitis pathogen profile for their herds, control measures and treatment decisions are improved. While elevations in bulk tank somatic cell count (SCC) can be an indication of herd mastitis problems, the personnel milking the cows are typically the initial component in the decision-making process for clinical mastitis treatment. Strategic milk culture programs are the only mechanisms to determine which microbial agents are causing mastitis problems.

Read more ...

A recent economic analysis estimated each clinically lame cow costs the dairy producer approximately $300. Costs associated with lameness include decreased milk production, reduced fertility and increased culling risk, treatment costs and labor requirements. Surveys indicate incidence of lameness on dairies varies between four and 55 cases per 100 cows per year and is dependent upon farm, location and time of year. Clearly, lameness is a costly disease and reducing its incidence will have a very favorable impact on dairy profitability.

Read more ...

Over the past few years, dry cow management has been re-examined with respect to nutrition housing and health. This [article] focuses on new ideas in lighting for dry cows and altering the length of the dry period as methods to improve overall productivity and health during the transition and subsequent lactation.

Read more ...

The ability of dairy cows to convert feedstuffs into products for human consumption is generally referred to as feed efficiency and is expressed as pounds of milk produced per pound of dry matter (DM) consumed. This expression represents a gross measure of feed efficiency and does not account for nutrients partitioned to reproduction, growth and tissue deposition. Thus, interpretation of the value obtained should consider stage of lactation, age and stage of gestation for the herd in question.

Read more ...

During the past few years, there has been a noticeable increase in publication of applied cow behavior research. Presently, many of the most active research groups in dairy cattle behavior are located in Europe and Canada. We need more dedicated research effort in the United States on applied behavior, and greater collaborative efforts, with a goal of developing decision support tools that assist the producer and consultant in making profitable decisions by accurately modeling behavioral responses to facilities and management and associated changes in cow and herd performance.

Read more ...