Proper nutrition is a key element of any successful dairy operation
Aug. 17 2018
Bill challenged me at a meeting about his high-producing Holstein herd (over 29,000 pounds of milk) with the question, “Do you have data that allows me to evaluate my herd to the national dairy...
March 25 2017
In today’s world, milk production efficiency is the name of the game. Feed efficiency is often calculated as the pounds of 3.5 percent fat-corrected milk (FCM) produced per pound of dry matter consu
March 25 2017
Proper grouping of cows can improve cow health, boost production, and raise income over feed costs. However, grouping cows is not free. Adequate facilities, time to make grouping decisions and manage
Jan. 25 2017
At the national dairy science meetings in Salt Lake City, Utah, in July, several abstracts featured new data on feed additives. By definition, a feed additive is a ration ingredient that does not provide...
March 10 2016
What's new in transition feeding? At the ADSA (American Dairy Science Association) meeting, transition cow research abstracts were prevalent. Several abstracts are listed below with a brief summary, a...
May 25 2015
Not all feed changes are created equal Feed and forage samples are the basis for your rations. Yet, variation is inherent in the process. Taking multiple samples will reduce the "noise" within your results
Dec. 10 2014
Rations don't always require a TMR Component feeding is an art form. For success, balance your rapidly degradable nutrients with feeds that break down slowly. While TMRs may dominate feeding today, some...
Sept. 25 2014
Total mixed ration (TMR) mixers are an integral part of the day-to-day operations on a dairy. These pieces of equipment are used several times a day, and selecting the proper machine can make feeding a...
Sept. 25 2014
Before making a purchase, evaluate these factors to ensure you will be able to feed cows efficiently. Properly sizing a TMR mixer to meet your needs and account for the ingredients in your ration can reduce...
Aug. 10 2014
What ration do your cows eat? The ration created on paper often differs from the one that is delivered, consumed and digested. Only when we deliver a consistent ration and cows consume it according to...
March 25 2014
The author has a dairy nutrition consulting business, Paradox Nutrition, LLC, in West Chazy, N.Y. At one time, I was a big advocate of two dry cow groups: a far-off group (60 to 21 days before calving)...
Aug. 10 2013
Review these ten decisions to determine if you can find additional income or reduce expenses on your farm or with your clients. Be a detective and make long-term economic decisions. When profit margins...
June 15 2013
High forage isn't always your best option When inventories are short or forages don't measure up, low-forage diets have merit. When moving to a lower forage diet, you must maintain effective fiber and...
March 25 2013
The goal of a total mixed ration (TMR) is to provide a balanced diet supplying the nutrients necessary for maintenance and growth. However, on farms, the quality of the TMR may vary between days (in relation...
Feb. 10 2013
For good health and high milk yields, cows need to be fed the proper levels of bioavailable minerals. For mineral nutrition, the 2001 Dairy NRC is still the best starting point, but these requirements...
Sept. 10 2012
Total mixed rations (TMRs) have become widely recognized as the optimal way to provide a consistent balance of nutrients. Despite our best efforts in formulating and delivering the ration to cows, though,...
May 10 2012
Growth doesn't stop in her second lactation. When facilities and space allow, most dairy farmers will separate their first-lactation cows from the cows in their second lactation or greater, recognizing...
April 10 2012
The goal of silage face management is to minimize exposure to oxygen. In the presence of oxygen, yeast can metabolize lactic acid (a strong acid that keeps the silage pH low). When pH rises, undesirable...
March 25 2011
How you feed matters, too. It's not just what you feed. TMR audits reveal the bottlenecks to getting consistent intakes and milk production. Avoid overfilling, one of the most common mistakes that keep...
March 25 2011
Keep an eye out for mycotoxin problems. Mycotoxin is a general term for a poison produced by a fungus. Only certain strains of certain fungi produce mycotoxins and only under certain environmental conditions