Milk Balancers and Fortifiers – What’s the Difference?
Feeding whole milk to calves makes sense in some dairy operations, but whole milk does not meet all of the calf’s nutritional needs. You might say, “that doesn’t make sense!” believing that the cows of today would not exist had the milk of the ancestral cow not been perfect for her calf. But research shows […]
Key considerations for clean colostrum and a healthy calf
Article originally written for and published by Progressive Dairy. Successful colostrum management requires careful attention to cleanliness. Colostrum, while it is still in a healthy cow, should have a bacteria count of essentially zero. However, by the time it gets into the calf, bacteria counts are often very high. Feeding “dirty” colostrum sets the calf […]
Unlocking your heifer inventory goals
Article originally published March 11, 2020 for Progressive Dairy. There are many topics to discuss when managing heifer inventory. Producers give careful thought to feed and labor costs, reproduction, semen strategies, etc. – the list can go on and on. While these are all excellent areas of focus, have you ever considered how many replacements […]
What do your employees make of your dairy’s herd management records?
As dairy farms become more sophisticated with the use of new technologies and digital dairy herd management records, on farm employee training needs to match the adaptation of new technologies and information management. From the “good old” breeding wheel and individual cow cards to electronic dairy management software, the amount of herd data collected can […]
The Most Common Reasons Cows Get Mastitis
Contracting mastitis in fresh dairy cows is a complicated process that requires a close look at the conditions and situations that allow for this harmful disease to develop. Mastitis is defined as an inflammation of the mammary gland caused by bacteria introduced either during the milking process or from environmental contact. The cow has three […]
Breaking 7 Common Myths on Colostrum
First one there is the winner! It’s a race between antibodies in the colostrum and the bacteria in the environment. Who would you like to win? I cannot even begin to count the number of times I’ve read an article or sat through a seminar about the importance of colostrum to a newborn calf. We […]
Milking Cows: Five Mistakes to Avoid
The process of milking cows requires a consistent milking routine and proper udder preparation to increase milk flow and reduce milk-out times. Some of the most critical items I have seen over the years that limit cows to have complete and faster milk-outs are: Not enough teat stimulation. Milk is produced in the upper part […]
Take Advantage of Milk Protein to Maximize your Milk Check
Cheese prices have reached record highs, according to NASS weekly surveys, and it makes sense to turn our attention to the milk protein pounds shipping out the door. Recently, USDA’s milk price announcement for July had final protein at $5.63/lb and $1.96/lb of butterfat. With almost all milk marketing orders in the U.S using a […]
Manage Hutch Calves with Heat Stress in Mind
With the recent high temperatures, heat stress has been a concern on many dairies. Just like cows, calves experience heat stress, too. While we do not see reduced milk production, we do see reduced average daily gain, less efficient use of feed nutrients and an increase in treatments. Below are some tips to help you […]
Protecting your Feed Investment During Heat Events with TMR Stabilizer
Hot, humid weather imposes physiological challenges on lactating dairy cows, leading to lower feed intake, reduced milk production, and lower pregnancy rates. Depressed feed intake during heat events is compounded by yeast and mold growth destroying the nutrients in the total mixed ration (TMR). These nutrients are critical for lactating dairy cows to assure they […]
Successfully Managing Long Dry Periods
The last two or three months have certainly brought extreme challenges and difficulties to our personal and business lives like we have never seen before. The need to produce and ship less milk during a time of depressed milk prices has caused dairy farm owners and managers to make difficult decisions, many of which are […]
I have to cut milk production. Now what?
2020 has seen some unprecedented markets, actions, and now mandates reducing the amount of milk sold by a farm. While there are many options to accomplish reducing milk volume for the short-term, it is important not to make drastic decisions, but to consider what is best for your operation. A combined approach of culling cows […]