Video | Business Headlines | Internet | Science | Scientific Ethics | Technology | Search

 

New research brings good news for dairy cows

1 February 2005

New research brings good news for dairy cows

By Janette Busch

Mastitis is a disease that can cause considerable economic losses to the dairy farmer and compromises the welfare of the cow.

There has been concern that the shape and colour of the teats of the cow may predispose some cows with certain types of teat characteristics to mastitis.

The results of this research show that there is no association between the frequency of infection and teat shape, teat-end, teat type or pigmentation of cows’ teats.

Mario Lopez-Benavides and his team from Dexcel, in association with Dr Jon Hickford from the Agricultural and Life Sciences Division at Lincoln University, carried out this research.

What they did was to visually score the teats for teat shape, teat-end shape and teat pigmentation, and came up with the five most frequent combinations. Then, each week for fourteen weeks, samples of the quarter foremilk were collected for bacteriological analyses and somatic cell count (SCC) - this count is an indication of teat health.


In total, 439 teats were scored (blind teats were excluded) and 5032 milk samples were analysed for bacteria and SCC.


The most common teat shape was cylindrical (51%), followed by the funnel (32.5%), with the rest (16.5%) being made up of three other shapes.


“This work is important because it means that farmers do not need to be concerned that the shape of their cows’ teat will predispose them to developing mastitis and the associated problems with withholding milk and loss of income this causes.

The dairy industry will also get a boost because some bulls who produced cows with suspect teat shapes, but who were otherwise top producers, will now be able to be used.

“This research was good, practical science that will benefit farmers in a very tangible way,” says Dr Jon Hickford, who supervised the project.

The research was a small part of a wider doctoral level study by Lopez- Benavides looking at ways of diagnosing susceptibility to mastitis and potential ways of breeding for resistance.

Originally from Colombia, Mario is now working as a scientist at Dexcel in Hamilton.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Media Mega Merger: StuffMe Hearing Argues Over Moveable Feast

New Zealand's two largest news publishers are appealing against the Commerce Commission's rejection of the proposal to merge their operations. More>>

Elsewhere:


Approval: Northern Corridor Decision Released

The approval gives the green light to construction of the last link of Auckland’s Western Ring Route, providing an alternative route from South Auckland to the North Shore. More>>

ALSO:


Crown Accounts: $4.1 Billion Surplus

The New Zealand Government has achieved its third fiscal surplus in a row with the Crown accounts for the year ended 30 June 2017 showing an OBEGAL surplus of $4.1 billion, $2.2 billion stronger than last year, Finance Minister Steven Joyce says. More>>

ALSO:

Mycoplasma Bovis: One New Property Tests Positive

The newly identified property... was already under a Restricted Place notice under the Biosecurity Act. More>>

Accounting Scandal: Suspension Of Fuji Xerox From All-Of-Government Contract

General Manager of New Zealand Government Procurement John Ivil says, “FXNZ has been formally suspended from the Print Technology and Associated Services (PTAS) contract and terminated from the Office Supplies contract.” More>>