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Summer Dairy Field Day-July 20 in Altura

Fri, Jul 8th, 2011
Posted in Agriculture

Extension Notes

A Summer Dairy Field Day will be held on Wednesday, July 20, 9:30 a.m. to 12 noon at Shadycrest-Holsteins (Scott & Michelle Herber), 18811 County Road 33, right on the southern edge of Altura, MN. Registration begins at 9:00 a.m. This field day is sponsored by Riverland Community College Farm Business Management, Minnesota Dairy Initiatives-SE Region, and the U of MN Extension Dairy Team.

No pre-registration is required. Handout materials will be available and plastic boots will be furnished for everyone to wear. Refreshments will be available during registration. No luncheon is involved.

This dairy features a double 12 DeLaval milking parlor with Activity. The herd consists of 600 cows. RHA is presently at 27,500 lbs/cow. Their 12-month average SCC has been less than 100,000. Recycled sand bedding is used in the free-stall barn. Sexed semen is used on heifers. Approximately 100 head of their Holstein cattle are sold annually for dairy purposes. The herd's pregnancy rate is at 23%. Facilities for the breeding and bred heifers as well as the dry cows include a remodeled existing free-stall barn with an addition and access to pasture

The theme of the field day is "Dairy Cow Management Practices that affect your Profitability." Topics related to this theme that will be discussed are:

•Transition Cow Management -- Dr. Noah Litherland, U of MN Dairy Nutritionist

•Cow Comfort issues with particular emphasis on Prevention of Lameness in the Dairy Herd - Dr. Marcia Endres, U of M Extension Dairy Specialist.

•Management Practices used at Shadycrest-Holsteins

•Perspectives from a Veterinarian - Dr. Kevin Nigon, Farm Veterinarian

Participants will be able to view the dairy facilities during the morning presentations.

Excellent management practices are necessary for the transition cow because of the need for that animal to freshen with a healthy calf without metabolic problems and to prepare her for the lactation period ahead. Cow comfort plays a prominent role on today's dairy farm for the well-being of the animal and to help her maintain a high level of milk production for a longer time during her lactation. Prevention of lameness must be a priority in managing the herd as loss of milk production and involuntary culling are costly to the dairy operation. These issues will be covered in depth during the field day.

For further information, contact Farm Business Management Instructors Tom Anderson, (507) 259-6269; Jack LaValla, (507) 951-9453; Wayne Pike, (507) 251-1937, or Neil Broadwater, U of MN Extension Educator-Dairy, (507) 536-6300.

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