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CELLCHECK TIP OF THE MONTH
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SERVICE PROVIDER NOTES N WS
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JANUARY EDITION 2015 AHI gratefully acknowledges the financial and other contributions of FBD, Teagasc, UCD and our other stakeholders to the CellCheck programme. J NE E I I Teagasc, FBD Trust, UCD and our other stakehold rs to t CellCheck programme.
Animal Health Ireland, Main Street, Carrick-on-Shannon, Co Leitrim. Tel: +353 (0) 71 9671928, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.animalhealthireland.ie
JUNE EDITION 2015
Dr. Bernadette O’Brien Animal and Grassland Research and Innovation Centre, Teagasc, Moorepark, Fermoy, Co.Cork
How many cows can one person milk?
THE MILKING process should be recognised as the most important operation on the dairy farm. From a labour perspective it is the most significant task of the day, accounting for approximately 33% of total labour demand, irrespective of herd size. While all farmers aspire to an efficient milking process, the outcome will be a function of people, cows and capital investment, and these must interact correctly to give optimum performance. Milking parlours are run most efficiently when the capacity of the milking equipment matches the capacity of the labour person(s) milking the cows. The milking operator should not be waiting for the milking equipment (e.g. cluster) to become available and the equipment should be fully utilised, not idle and waiting for the operator to catch up. Thus, efficiency is maximised when the equipment and labour are balanced. Three important factors in this equation are
1. the work routine of the person;
2. number ofmilking units and presence of automatic cluster removers (ACRs) (to prevent over-milking);
3. stage of lactation (which influences individual cow milking time).
A further important factor is the length of time the operator may wish to spend in the milking parlour or how long the operator can remain efficient at the milking task, which is generally considered to be not longer than 2 hours. In order to add clarity to this issue, a research study at Moorepark investigated the effect of milking cluster number, pre-milking routine and stage of lactation on milking row time, over-milking and operator idle time, in a side x side parlour. As cluster number increased, row time and duration of over-milking were increased and idle time was reduced. The type of routine practiced largely dictates the number of clusters one operator can handle. In a one-person milking process, when a minimal pre-milking routine is applied, 22 milking clusters may be operated without experiencing over-milking
of longer than ~2 min in the absence of ACRs, resulting in a milking time of 2 hours and 1.6 hours in early and late lactation, respectively, for a herd of 220 cows (e.g. 10 rows, 12.0 min milking row time). The presence of ACRs would allow a cluster number of up to 26 to be managed due to the ACRs effect in eliminating over-milking in late lactation, thus enabling a 260 cow herd to be milked in 2 hours and 1.8 hours in early and late lactation, respectively. Alternatively, when a full pre-milking routine is applied (strip, dip and wipe), milking cluster numbers of 14 (early lactation) or less (late lactation) may be operated without experiencing over-milking of longer than ~2 min in the absence of ACRs. However, ACRs would prevent over-milking with increased milking units. Additional units (>14) would allow greater cow numbers to be milked within a specified time of, for example ~2 hours, but row time would increase, e.g. to 16 and 19 min with 22 and 26 units, respectively). Thus, informed decisions and choices need to be made with regard to desired milking performance, since actual performance will be influenced by a number of inter-dependent variables, such as herd size, preferred pre-milking routine, preferred milking time and available investment capital.
JUNE EDITION 2015
CELLCHECK TIP OF THE MONTH
Teat Disinfection-not just a winter sport!
AFTER A BUSY spring and mating season, you may be tempted to skip some of the ‘routine’ jobs that take a bit of time. If you are considering stopping post-milking teat disinfection because the cows are out grazing now……DON’T!! While this might save you an extra few minutes at each milking, it could be one of the most costly decisions you will make. Mastitis happens when bacteria get into the quarter through an open teat end. These bacteria are everywhere in the cow’s environment, both indoors and at grass. Cows with chronically infected quarters can also spread mastitis bacteria to other cows. So even though cows are outside, they’re still being exposed to bacteria that could cause mastitis. Good teat disinfection after milking reduces new mastitis infections by 50%. It does this by killing the bacteria that are left behind after milking, and by maintaining the teat skin in good condition. The only part of the milking machine that comes in contact with the cow is the liner, and it happens every time the cow is milked. So even in summer you need to make sure that the whole teat surface touched by the cluster liner has been disinfected-a drop of teat disinfectant at the end of the teat is not enough!
A solid pattern means teats have been well covered A patchy picture indicates poor coverage of the teat
If using a concentrate teat disinfectant, mix according to label directions. Use water of very high quality.
Use at least 15 ml/cow/milking to get good coverage when spraying (or 10 ml/cow/milking if using a dip cup).
Check the spray pattern regularly, and change or service the nozzles if necessary.
If dipping, rinse out the dip cup when the teat dip gets low-don’t just top it up. This reduces the risk of milk or other organic material accumulating in the dip cup. Clean it out immediately if dirt/ manure drops into the cup.
For good mastitis control, the goal is to cover all the skin, on all of the teats, of all of the cows, all of the time!
For more information, see CellCheck Farm Guidelines for Mastitis Control - Guideline 7, 26 & Management Note I
JUNE EDITION 2015
NEWS Finola McCoy, Programme Manager
Strategic Plan and Acounting for Delivery Documents published by AHI
Preparation is underway for the Animal Health Ireland AGM and launch of the AHI Strategic Plan (2015-2017). The meeting will be addressed by Simon Coveney, T.D., Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine. The Minister will also officially launch the AHI Strategic Plan (2015-2017). The AHI Strategic Plan can be read in more detail at http://www.animalhealthireland.ie/ckfinder/userfiles/ f i l es /20150506%20St rategy%20Document%20 2015%20V1_1%20FINAL(2).pdf
The accompanying Accounting for Delivery document, detailing the outputs and outcomes of the 2012-2014 Strategic Plan, is available at
A Resource and Point of Contact for CellCheck Activities in your Area CellCheck Regional Coordinators
Tom Downes 087 2564669 Longford/Monaghan Lakeland Dairies
Paul Cullinan 087 2470803 Mayo/Sligo Aurivo
Paddy Coyle 074 9149127 Donegal Aurivo (Donegal)
Brendan Dillon 087 2626851 Cork/Waterford/ Wexford/Wicklow Glanbia
Tom Starr 087 6697010 Tipperary/Limerick Arrabawn Co-op
Joe Moriarty 066 7163200 Kerry/Clare Kerry Agribusiness
John Fitzpatrick 087 6697010 Kilkenny/Laois/Carlow/ Kildare/Dublin Glanbia
Sinead Treanor 023 8822369 West Cork Carbery Group
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