Auteur: Zom R.L.G., Holshof G., Ipema A.H. and De Mol R.M.
Jaar van uitgifte: 2015
An experiment was conducted with the objective of evaluating whether the combined data from grazing and rumen pH sensors could be used to support grazing management. Data were collected during the 2014 grazing season from a 60-cow herd. The average milk yield was 26.1 kg milk cow‑1 day‑1. The cows were housed during the night (16:00-06:00 h) and received 8.4 kg dry matter (DM) of conserved forage cow‑1 day‑1. During the daytime (06:00-16:00 h) the cows were strip-grazed. Daily, the cows were given an edible herbage allowance of approximately 8 kg DM above 5 cm stubble height cow‑1. Automatic milking system visits and milk yields were collected per cow. Concentrates were fed during milking with a transponder-controlled concentrate dispenser. Each cow was equipped with a grazing sensor to measure grazing time. Eight cows were equipped with boluses to measure rumen pH. Milk yield was recorded for each milking and milk composition was recorded weekly. Pre- and post-grazing sward height and herbage composition were recorded daily. Relationships between grass and sensor data and cow performance were derived on the basis of retrospective analysis of milk performance, grazing behaviour and rumen pH data. Rumen pH sensors appear to be of little value. There was no clear relationship between grazing activity and pasture characteristics.