Dairy News

The latest news from the Penn State Extension Dairy Team.
July 26, 2017

Horses, cattle, sheep, and goats will generally avoid poisonous plants. Grazing animals seem to have an innate sense of which plants are okay to consume and which to avoid. However, in pastures which have become overgrazed or brown from drought they will be more apt to sample less palatable species including poisonous broadleaves.

July 14, 2017

Carbohydrates and protein are critical nutrients in precision feeding however, some interesting observations on calcium and phosphorus agreement have materialized.

An example of a quad plate demonstrating growth from a quarter sample of a cow with a high SCC.  (photo by Ginger Fenton, 2015)
July 3, 2017

New ways to incorporate on-farm culturing in herd health routines.

July 3, 2017

A look at feeding management in Pennsylvania robot herds.

June 16, 2017

Corn silage quality can vary in nutrient content throughout the year. What metrics define high quality silage?

May 15, 2017

Utilizing pasture on dairy operations can benefit the animals and the cash flow in several ways.

April 28, 2017

Too much time away from their pen can cause a deficit in cows' daily time budget.

April 28, 2017

The pursuit of lower somatic cell counts to achieve milk quality goals leads some to wonder if the cow's immune response is compromised.

April 28, 2017

Feeding more milk replacer to calves can increase average daily gain, but can reduce starter intake and lower nitrogen efficiency and postweaning digestion.

April 28, 2017

Pain management makes dehorning less dreadful for you and your calves.

April 17, 2017

On any sized dairy operation there are a multitude of events occurring from the time a calf is born until she leaves the herd. Software programs are available to help manage this task of recording events. The bottom line is no matter how good someone’s memory is it is no substitute for having historic information on animals of all ages that can be easily accessed. However, the information is only as good as the person entering the data and is useful only if someone is monitoring the events.

March 15, 2017

The benefits of corn silage kernel processing have been replicated many times in research and at the farm level. The main advantage is breaking the corn kernels into pieces, which should result in improved starch utilization and milk production. However, are producers observing the benefits of kernel processing? Is this management practice a sure thing? Unfortunately, the information collected from Extension’s “Crops to Cow” project does not entirely support this statement.

February 28, 2017

Get ready for summer heat before it gets here, because we know it is coming.

February 28, 2017

Factors to consider before shifting voluntary waiting period or dry period length.

February 28, 2017

Increasing heifer growth rates, regardless of the feeding strategy, will increase the possibility of decreasing age at calving, which can dramatically decrease heifer costs.

February 16, 2017

Skills in detective work are sometimes more valuable than knowing the ins and outs of nutrition. Today’s computer models make ration formulation almost too easy. When troubleshooting “nutrition” problems many people start with the paper ration. However, in reality the problem many times is in the implementation. This is where science and art come into play.

January 16, 2017

Most dairy producers will welcome the end of 2016. The variability in weather, forage quality and quantity, and the low milk prices will not be missed. However, what will 2017 offer and what can be done to manage the ups and downs? The one constant is precision feeding as the lifeline for keeping margins in check throughout the year.

December 19, 2016

Five steps to monitoring the financial health of a dairy business.

Overmilking can lead to hyperkeratosis, putting cows at greater risk for infection.
December 19, 2016

Overmilking can damage teat ends and compromise udder health. A simple test can help you determine if you are over or under milking.