The use of precision dairy technologies for the management of confinement dairy cattle has been well documented. Less work has been conducted on evaluating precision dairy technologies within pasture-based dairy herds in the United States. The potential of precision dairy technologies to be utilized in pasture-based dairy herds was evaluated at the West Central Outreach and Research Center in Morris, MN, organic grazing and low-input conventional dairy herds. An ear-attached accelerometer was validated for accuracy of recording rumination, eating and activity behaviors in pasture-based dairy crossbred cows. Activity and rumination were recorded by an activity and rumination collar system from January 2014 to December 2017, and purebred Holsteins were compared with crossbreds. Because activity and rumination monitoring collars have improved estrus detection in confinement dairy herds, the estrus detection performance of a collar system was evaluated in an organic grazing dairy herd and a low-input conventional herd by breeding season.
University of Minnesota M.S. thesis. February 2018. Major: Animal Sciences. Advisors: Bradley Heins, Marcia Endres. 1 computer file (PDF); v, 94 pages.
Precision dairy technologies for organic and low-input dairy production systems.
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