Pre- and postpartum nutritional effects on milk production, milk composition, calf weaning weight and postpartum reproductive performance of commercial beef cows
MetadataShow full item record
The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of prepartum and postpartum nutrition on milk production of commercial beef cows. Forty-three Angus or Angus X Holstein females, ranging in age from 2 to 6 yr, were randomly assigned by age and percentage Holstein within age to one of two prepartum grazing treatments (PRE). All females, regardless of PRE, were assigned at calving to receive the same post-calving nutritional energy. Females were assigned at calving by age, percentage Holstein within age, prepartum nutritional treatment and calving date to one of two milking groups. Milk weight (grams), milk composition (fat, protein, lactose, solids-not-fat, somatic cell count), dam body condition score (1 to 9), dam body weight, dam backfat thickness, loineye area, calf weaning weight and postpartum interval to estrus were all evaluated. Milk removal occurred biweekly by vacuum milking machine after intravenous injection of 20 IU of oxytocin. Samples were weighed and taken for milk analysis and determination of milk components. At 76Â± 10 d post-calving, females were assigned by age, percentage Holstein within age, prepartum nutritional treatment, and calving date to receive one of two postpartum nutritional treatments (POST). Females continued to be milked by machine biweekly until calves were weaned 199 Â± 10 d. Differences in grazing level prior to calving significantly effected calf birth weights, with dams on the prepartum restricted grazing being lighter in weight at birth, 36.69 Â± .68 and 38.95 Â± .81 kg for PRE-L and PRE-H groups, respectively, however grazing differences did not effect calf weaning weight, calf gain or calf average daily gain. POST nutritional treatments significantly effected all calf performance traits with 37.10Â±.70, 38.54Â±.88; 196.89Â±4.9, 213.33Â±6.2; 159.79Â±4.8, 174.78Â±6.0; .809Â±.024, .888Â±.030; for birth weight, weaning weight, calf gain and calf average daily gain from cows on the POST -M or POST -H nutritional treatments, respectively. Pre-partum nutrition effected milk production (P < .001) with dams from the PRE-L grazing group producing less milk, 5622 Â± 75 vs 6888 Â±80 g. Postpartum energy also effected milk production with dams on the POST-H energy level producing more milk than dams from the POST-M group. Percentages of fat, protein, lactose and solids-not-fat were not different between the prepartum or postpartum diets (P>. 10). Somatic cell count was negatively correlated with dam milk production (P< .03). Postpartum interval to estrus was shorter for the PRE-L group than for the PRE-H, 43 Â± 4 vs 53 Â± 4 d.
- Masters Theses