Edited by Dr. Jud Heinrichs, Professor of Dairy and Animal Science, Dairy Digest features articles by Penn State's experts in dairy management, engineering, herd health, and related areas. Dairy Digest has been published by the Department of Dairy and Animal Science and Penn State Cooperative Extension since 1963.
A newly published study supports findings from previous research. Calves grew faster before weaning on higher rates of milk or milk replacer, but size differences disappeared after weaning and milk production in first lactation was not affected.
Patience and timing will help you maximize the value of manure applied this spring.
Well, if you answered “NO” to that question then maybe you need to review – or create – job descriptions that you have for key positions. Job descriptions provide the foundation for building strong human resource management practices into the day-to-day management of a dairy farm business.
New research from Penn State shows that feeding a methane inhibitor has potential as a strategy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from cattle.
Robotic dairies surveyed in Pennsylvania had good hygiene scores overall. Even so, those with cleaner cows had lower bacteria counts in bulk tank milk samples.
We recently evaluated the costs of feeding pasteurized milk to calves in comparison to other feeding systems considering current market conditions. To do so, we utilized a spreadsheet tool we developed a few years ago with colleagues at Virginia Tech. The results may surprise you.
As we look at reproductive management and its impact on overall success of a dairy operation, it is clearly a critical component. But the full impact of management successes or failures often won’t be seen in the short-term. Managing for reproductive efficiency requires patience and a long-term mindset.
Biofilms protect bacteria, and you're probably familiar with them as build-up on surfaces of equipment around the farm. But new research reveals some mastitis-causing bacteria use biofilms to survive inside the mammary gland.
The use of unmanned aerial vehicles (drones) in agriculture is in its infancy, but there are a lot of possibilities.
The group of animals that have recently been weaned and grouped together are often called the Transition Calf Group. But too often this group of animals becomes The Forgotten Group. We focus labor and capital on keeping calves healthy and growing and on catching heifers in heat and getting them bred, but if we lose a month of time between these two points we will never get it back.
Description of revisions and new additions to genetic evaluations as of December 2, 2014.
For most major renovations or expansions, a lender will want a business plan to outline the plans and goals for the farm’s future success. For that plan to be approved, a comprehensive financial plan must be included that proves the farm’s past profitability and justifies the expansion for further profits down the road.
A reminder that all Pennsylvania dairy and livestock operations must register with the Department of Agriculture for premise identification.
A reminder about animal identification required by the USDA Animal Disease Traceability program.
Cleanliness of teats as the cow enters the robot and the ability of the robot to clean teats prior to milking will impact teat cleanliness at attachment and ultimately cow health and milk quality.
A study of data from Penn State calf research suggests that calf hip height and body weight can be useful predictors of future milk yield, while calf growth rate and starter feed intake can impact mature cow body weight.
Managing feed refusals is a balance between providing enough to ensure that each cow has access to all the feed she wants and minimizing waste.
Automatic Milking Systems (AMS, also known as robotic milkers) are slowly gaining popularity on Pennsylvania dairy farms, with approximately 35 PA farms currently using the technology. This article outlines a recent study of AMS performance on PA farms.
Agriculture is one of the most dangerous occupations in the United States. Take the time to use your number one piece of safety equipment - that one between your ears. Harvest time adds extra stress to already full days, but let's do all we can to avoid losing any farmers or future farmers this fall.
Use of a selection index, such as Net Merit, can help producers capture the most genetic gain and economic value when making breeding decisions. The Net Merit formula will be adjusted, a new Grazing Merit index will be calculated, and a base change will occur with the release of the December 2014 proofs.