Inside Dairy October-November 2020

DHL contract milker Aidan O’Leary (right, with Mick O’Connor) says MaxT is “a win-win for man and beast, which is always nice”.

bill. We told him MaxT would save him time and money. He ummed and aaahed. We said, ‘ok then, keep the $40,000 power bill’. He really wanted to sort that bill though, so he gave it a go. He saved three hours a day, and around $12,000 on the bill too. Also, SCCs sitting around 270 dropped down to around 150.” Far from lame results Aidan O’Leary is on his fourth season contract milking for DHL, supervised by Mick O’Connor. Aidan’s team is peak milking 1380 Kiwi-cross cows (in four herds) using a 56-bail rotary with no in- shed technology, which Aidan says hasn’t been a limiting factor. “We had zero change to production and to SCC. Right away, cow flow into and out of the shed – especially into it – improved massively. Milking times were much shorter. We’re able to milk more cows per person per hour. There’s less shed time for people and the cows, and more time in the paddock for cows to eat grass. “We’ve had a big improvement in cows’ teat condition and a drop in mastitis. We also reduced last season’s 10% lameness down to 2.5%.” ‘Win-win’ for staff and cows Aidan says MaxT has been a win for the business due to lower shed-running costs, and for efficiency, giving more time back to his team. “It’s also a win for the cows, because if cow flow improves and milking times decrease, they’re back in the paddock, they’re happy, their teat condition is better, they’re getting lame less. “It’s a win-win for man and beast, which is always nice.”

Milking changes across DHL's farms • Used MaxT to standardise milking start and finish times. • Improved cow flow using markers to indicate backing gate use. • Put up panels to guide cows into the dairy and minimise distractions. • Adjusted pulsation rates (e.g. to 70:30), platform speeds and clusters used. • Used cup liners to reduce ‘teat slip’ (front teats/ square; back teats/round). • Identified better cupping techniques and when to get the cups off early.

Have a go at implementing MaxT yourself. Check out our step-by-step guide and download our Milksmart app for help calculating your MaxT time at dairynz.co.nz/milking

Lisa Fedyk, herd manager on Aidan O’Leary’s team, gets to grips with the MaxT approach.

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Inside Dairy | October/November 2020

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