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Effect of a peri-parturient eprinomectin treatment of dairy cows on milk production






New Zealand Veterinary Journal 49(3): 106-110

Effect of a peri-parturient eprinomectin treatment of dairy cows on milk production

This study was conducted to quantify and economically evaluate the effect on milk production of peri-parturient treatment of dairy cows with eprinomectin. On 3 farms in separate geographic areas of New Zealand, 849 first-calf heifers and multiparous cows were ranked and paired within parity, date of calving and expected milk production. Within pairs, cows were randomly allocated to treatment with either a commercial formulation of eprinomectin, applied at a dose rate of 500 micro g/kg liveweight, or an equivalent volume of vehicle containing no antiparasitic agent and administered at the same dose volume, generally within the first week post-calving. On each farm, trial cows shared the same pasture. Over a single lactation, records were maintained of milk quantity and content. Trichostrongylid eggs were identified in pre-treatment faecal samples from all farms, verifying the presence of gastrointestinal parasites. Overall 25.5% of the cows sampled were positive for nematode eggs, but only 8% had counts >=50 eggs/gm of faeces (epg). Daily milk volume, milk protein and milksolids (yield of milk fat + milk protein) were higher for eprinomectin-treated multiparous cows than for controls (milk volume: 20.36 l/day vs. 19.76 l/day, P=0.005; milk protein: 0.700 kg/day vs. 0.685 kg/day, P=0.012; milksolids: 1.613 kg/day vs. 1.583 kg/day, P=0.031, respectively). The daily value of the increased production from eprinomectin-treated multiparous cows was estimated to be NZ$0.034 for milk fat (P=0.095) and NZ$0.078 for milk protein (P=0.012), equating to NZ$0.104 for milksolids (P=0.031), averaged over the whole lactation. No significant difference in milk production was detected between treated and control first-calf heifers. Averaged over the whole herd, the peri-parturient treatment of multiparous cows and first-calf heifers with eprinomectin increased daily milk volume and milk protein production of treated vs. control cows (19.28 l/day vs. 18.86 l/day, P=0.020, and 0.661 kg/day vs. 0.650 kg/day, P=0.047, respectively). These data provide evidence that the use of a peri-parturient treatment of eprinomectin on multiparous cows can increase their production of fluid milk and milksolids.

Accession: 003414556

PMID: 16032172

DOI: 10.1080/00480169.2001.36212

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