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Northeast Dairy Nutrition Symposium

Dr. Rick Grant’s Management Tips for Maximized Ration Response

  • Management can help or hinder response to the formulated ration. Across a wide range of studies – with tie stalls, free stalls, and AMS – essential management factors keep rising to the top: 1) time available for eating, resting, recumbent rumination…time budgeting; 2) managing stall and manger stocking density and overcrowding; ensuring feed availability 24/7; and 4) comfortable stalls with deep bedding. These factors have to be right on a farm or else cows will not respond optimally to the ration.
  • Never underestimate the magnitude of the response to management…that is the foundation of cow comfort economics. Likewise, though we often focus on the economics of cow comfort we cannot ignore basic animal welfare and our industry’s social license to produce milk. Low-stress management means that cows aren’t rushed while eating and have freedom to lie down and ruminate, and these cows tend to have better rumen pH. Desirable rumen conditions promote fiber fermentation, microbial growth, cow health, and more milk components.
  • Think about overcrowding as a subclinical stressor that depletes the cow’s biological resources without creating a detectable change in function such as milk yield, reproduction, immune function or health. Yet it leaves the cow unable to successfully respond to additional stressors that abound on a farm. We may be kidding ourselves if we think a herd is successfully managing overcrowding with no biological penalty.

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Dr. Rick Grant

Dr. Mike VanAmburgh

Dr. Mike VanAmburgh on Getting the Most from Formulated Diets

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Dr. Will Seymour on the Power of Using HMTBa in Diets

Production Challenges: Milk Fat and Protein Production

  • HMTBa (methionine hydroxy analogue) is underutilized in dairy diets.
  • HMTBa fed at 0.1% diet DM supports rumen fermentation and normal biohydrogenation pathway leading to increases milk fat production of 90-130 g/day.
  • HMTBa fed at 0.1 % diet DM tends to increase milk and milk protein yield.

Opportunities with HMTBa:

  • Feed 0.1% HMTBa in diet DM, or ~ 1 g MFP®/ALIMET® for every 2 lbs DMI.
  • Feed 25-30 g/day of MFP® or ALIMET® to lactating Holstein cows for optimized results.
  • Graph percent fat distribution for herd and pens to identify opportunities.
  • Graph percent fat vs. milk yield to identify high production cows with low milk fat percentage.
  • Higher levels of HMTBa (0.15-0.20 % DM) can increase milk fat further with a consistent ROI.

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Dr. Will Seymour


Kevin Ziemba’s Tips for the Kinds of Cows to Create

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