Feed intake and social behaviour of group-fed cows in loose housing. 1. Factors affecting individual intake of beet given on a restrictive basis

Konggaard, S.P.; Krohn, C.C.

Beretning fra Statens Husdyrbrugsforsoeg 425: 25


Accession: 000377550

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1. During winter in 2 years in Denmark 81 cows were kept in loose housing and were given fodder sugar beet with the morning feed. The beet was in troughs protected by a rail and 70 cm feeding space was allowed for each cow. Intake of beet was recorded, a total of 537 observations, by weighing each cow before going to the beet and after leaving it. In the first year 11.0 kg/head was allowed and intakes ranged from 6.0 to 18.0 kg, in the second 16.7 kg and from 10.9 to 22.8 kg. Intake was not related to stage of lactation or milk production. In a multiple regression with weight, age and social rank, only the last had significant effect on intake, but rank was significantly correlated with age and with weight. First-calf cows ranked lowest, then second-calvers, but in third- to fifth-calvers age and rank were not related. In both years first-calvers ate significantly less than the others. In the older cows the 33% of highest rank ate significantly more than those ranking below them. (From summary.).