Associations of reproduction and health with the performance and profit of dairy cows
The objective of the study was to evaluate the associations of the variable intensity in culling of dairy cows and culling due to the movement disorders, mammary gland diseases, long calving interval, low fertility and postpartum complications with production, reproduction and economic parameters on 60 commercial dairy herds. The data encompassed 34 632 cow records from the Czech Republic 12 regions and were collected during a 1-yr period (2012). The milk yield during the production period was analysed relative to the reproduction and economic parameters. The main reasons for culling cows were fertility problems and movement disorders, followed by the low milk yield, mammary gland diseases, and postpartum complications. The analysis of fertility showed that the herds with the longest calving intervals (≥ 410 d) and the highest culling due to fertility (≥ 25% of the total) achieved the lowest milk yields. The average difference between the highest and lowest calving interval (≤ 389 d) groups was 721 kg/cow per yr. The lowest reported profitability of costs was for the longest calving interval and the highest postpartum complications groups. Although the reproductive performance directly affects the dairy farm profitability, the dairy cows’ production potential should be considered when making culling decisions in order to achieve the most profitable management strategy.
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