Auteur: Holshof G., Evers A.G., De Haan M.H.A. and Galama P.G.
Jaar van uitgifte: 2015
Dairy herds in the Netherlands will increase in size in the coming years, due to the imminent abolition of milk quotas. Also more farms will make use of automatic milking systems (AMS). Both trends mean less opportunity for grazing. As the grazing area itself will not increase it has become a priority to explore new ways of grazing. At Dairy Campus – a Dutch experimental farm – two distinct grazing systems were tested: strip grazing with AMS and one-day rotational grazing with a fixed paddock area and a standard growing period of 23 days. The grazing time was restricted to daytime. At night the cows were fed silage and concentrates. In the one-day rotational grazing, the grass allowance depended on what was grown in 23 days on the fixed paddock. The silage feeding was adapted to the allowed amount of grass. The total allowance of grass and roughage for both systems was 16 kg dry matter cow‑1 d‑1 supplemented with concentrates. The strip grazing system had a fixed allowance of 8 kg DM grass cow‑1 d‑1 supplemented with 8 kg TMR cow‑1 d‑1. Model calculations showed a relation between grazing efficiency, milk price and income. Grazing will be more profitable than an indoor system at lower milk prices. At higher milk prices a high grazing efficiency is necessary to make a grazing system profitable.