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  • Author: Myrtill Gráff x
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Abstract

A total of 46 Swiss alpine does were examined. We analysed the composition of the milk and evaluated the body condition of the animals (BCS: 0.5 to 4.5 scale) on the same day in the last third of lactation. Goats were grouped according to their body condition for statistical calculations. We found that there was a statistically detectable relationship between body condition and milk composition of the goats. Together with the increase of BCS, the fat, protein and mineral contents in the milk increased as well. Significantly more fat, protein and mineral contents were found in the milk (6.01%;3.55%; 0,98%) in case of the well-conditioned (BCS 3.5) animals than in the thin ones (BCS 1.5-2) (4.56%, 3.11%, 0.77%) (P<5%). The concentration of milk sugar was similar between thin and better conditioned groups of animals, so the body condition did not affect these values. The importance of our study is that, the high fat and protein content of milk increases the yield of dairy products. If the animals can produce milk that has higher fat and protein content, than we can produce more dairy products that will bring more economic benefits. The aim of our study was to evaluate the effects of body condition on milk yield and quality (milk composition) in dairy goats.

Abstract

The body condition scoring system (BCS) is a means of accurately determining body condition of dairy cows, independent of body weight and farm size. The body condition scores represent a subjective visual or tactile (or both) evaluation of the amount of subcutaneous fat in a cow. The system is a useful method of evaluating body energy reserves and is used widely for evaluating nutritional status in dairy cows. The different stages of lactation have different recommended scores. BCS change during the lactation period depends on the milk production, reproduction and health status. Extreme body condition loss in the early lactation can cause irregular heats, longer time to first ovulation, and fail to conceive. The aim of this research was to determine the effect of BCS on Holstein cows’ reproduction. The relationship between some BCS parameters: BCS at calving (BCSc), minimum BCS after calving (BCSmin) and the reduction of BCS after calving (BCSr) on one hand and three reproductive parameters: the days from calving to first service (DFS), number of inseminations to conception (NIC), and days open (DO) on the other hand were studied in three private dairy farms in South Hungary. BCS were determined monthly during milk recording. A total of 786 records of Holstein cows from 1 to 3 lactation were evaluated. DFS was significantly (P<5%) influenced by BCSs and BCSmin. The number of inseminations to conception (NIC) varied according to the individual cow. In the present study was between 1 and 12. The most favourable DO values were observed in the group having >3.5 BCSc (150.04 days), the group with 3.0-3.5 BCSmin (138.92) and the group having >1 BCSr. There was no significant relationship found between DO and the BCS groups.