Traits of feeding behaviour for the estimation of roughage intake of dairy cows under loose housing condition

Stamer, E.; Reinsch, N.; Junge, W.

Zuchtungskunde 72(5): 340-358


ISSN/ISBN: 0044-5401
Accession: 003600786

Download citation:  

Article/Abstract emailed within 1 workday
Payments are secure & encrypted
Powered by Stripe
Powered by PayPal

The present paper deals with the estimation of daily roughage intake for the individual cow based on feeding behaviour only. Before this was possible autocovariances between the serial daily measurements were analysed, the significance of fixed effects was demonstrated, and the repeatabilities and correlations between cow effects and between residual effects for roughage intake and for different traits of feeding behaviour were estimated. 46 German Red and Black Pied cattle were observed for on average 147 days from the 8th up to the 200th day of lactation. The animals were kept under two different competitive situations with 2.1 and 1.4 cows per feeding place. All animals were fed roughage ad libitum. Concentrates were given according to milk yield at the concentrate dispenser. All activities at the feeding rack and at the concentrate feeding station were monitored automatically. Environmental dependencies between the feeding activities of daily repeated measurements can be ignored. Roughage intake and intake behaviour did not differ between the two competitive situations. Number and stage of lactation, breed, test day, liveweight and amount of concentrates have to be taken into account to describe the roughage intake and intake behaviour. Based on the estimated repeatabilities and correlations the automatically monitored behaviour at the feeding rack and at the concentrate feeding station during one month ensure an accuracy of estimation of rFI=0.67 for the roughage intake per day.