Study on the Effect of Different Rearing Conditions during Milk Drinking Period on Performance and Behaviour of Dairy Cows in their First Lactation

The researchers wanted to see if the sire lineage and rearing conditions until weaning affected cow growth, milk yield, and maze learning behaviour. 35 Holstein heifers were randomly assigned to one of three treatments: SM, n=13, in hutch from 2nd to 56th day, 6 kg milk replacer daily), then loose housing pen to weaning (they received a maximum of 6 kg milk daily); SN, n=9, after 3 days with own mother in pen with nursing cow (they received a maximum of 6 kg milk daily); H, n=13, in hutch from 2nd to 56th day (6 kg milk replacer daily). All heifers were kept in pens with the same ration to the calving after weaning at the 84th day. Live body weight (LBW) and milk supply were measured every month and every day during lactation. The 5th month of nursing was used to assess maze learning. A General Linear Model ANOVA was used to analyse the data. The LBW in SN (SM 528.211.4 kg, SN 571.715.3 kg, H 533.212.3 kg) tended to be the highest on the 30th day. In terms of lactation, SM had the highest LBW and H had the lowest (SM 612.612.2 kg, SN 623.116.4 kg, H 569.813.2 kg, P0.05). For 305 days of lactation, the SN produced the most milk (SM 7143.9 241.5 kg, SN 7345.1 319.0 kg, H 7146.7 234 kg), whereas the H produced the most FCM (SM 6290.3 203.2 kg, SN 6307.6 268.4 kg, H 6399.3 197.1 kg). Group SN was the first to complete the maze (SM 1141.4120.5 s, SN 810.3160.5 s, H 1120.8118.6 s). The number of vocalisations was considerably different (SM 32.35.7, SN 20.84.4, H 9.92.6, P0.01). The findings suggested that the manner of weaning dairy cows had an impact on their performance and behaviour.

Author(S) Details

Michal Uhrincat
National Agricultural and Food Centre, Research Institute of Animal Production Nitra, Hlohovecka 2, Luzianky-95141, Slovakia.

Jan Broucek
National Agricultural and Food Centre, Research Institute of Animal Production Nitra, Hlohovecka 2, Luzianky-95141, Slovakia.

Lucia Macuhova
National Agricultural and Food Centre, Research Institute of Animal Production Nitra, Hlohovecka 2, Luzianky-95141, Slovakia.

Anton Hanus
National Agricultural and Food Centre, Research Institute of Animal Production Nitra, Hlohovecka 2, Luzianky-95141, Slovakia.

Peter Kisac
National Agricultural and Food Centre, Research Institute of Animal Production Nitra, Hlohovecka 2, Luzianky-95141, Slovakia.

View Book:- https://stm.bookpi.org/RAAVS-V3/article/view/4028

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