The study of milk flow curves provides useful information for enhancing milking efficiency and protecting udder health by adapting milking machine and milking procedures to the physiological requirements of the cow. The aim of this experiment was to investigate, using field data, the relationships among traits of the milk flow curves, their sources of variation, and milking performances in terms of milk production, machine-on time, and udder health. A total of 2,486 milk flow curves of the whole udder were collected in 82 Italian Holstein-Friesian dairy herds in the Lombardy region of Italy. Approximately one-third (35.1%) of milk flow curves were classified as bimodal. Most flow characteristics were influenced by lactation number, days in milk, and peak flow but also strongly affected by premilking operations. Proper udder preparation, including forestripping and predipping, resulted in better milking performances compared with poor preparation, with greater milk yield per milking, shorter milking time, and lesser bimodality. Premilking delay time, between the start of teat stimulation and cup attachment, affected milking time significantly: The shortest milking time was obtained for a range of delay time between 1 and 60 s. As the delay time increased, the percentage of bimodality dropped significantly. Increasing the number of clusters per operator led to greater percentages of bimodal curves. The greater somatic cell count of cows with bimodal curves supports the hypothesis of the negative effect of bimodality on udder health and indicates the importance of avoiding its occurrence using proper pre-milking procedures.
|Titolo:||Factors affecting milk flow traits in dairy cows : results of a field study|
|Parole Chiave:||Dairy cow; Milk flow; Milking procedure|
|Settore Scientifico Disciplinare:||Settore AGR/19 - Zootecnica Speciale|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2007|
|Digital Object Identifier (DOI):||10.3168/jds.S0022-0302(07)71602-8|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||01 - Articolo su periodico|