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Title: Reasons That Cows in Dairy Herd Improvement Programs Exit the Herd

item Norman, H
item Wright, Janice
item LOMBARD, J - Animal And Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS)

Submitted to: AIPL Research Reports
Publication Type: Government Publication
Publication Acceptance Date: 9/30/2009
Publication Date: 9/30/2009
Citation: Norman, H.D., Wright, J.R., Lombard, J.E. 2009. Reasons That Cows in Dairy Herd Improvement Programs Exit the Herd. AIPL Research Reports. CULL1 (9-09)

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: This new Animal Improvement Programs Laboratory Research Report was initiated to provide the US industry more comprehensive information on a routine basis on why dairy cows leave Dairy Herd Improvement herds. AIPL had previously published some information on culling rate, but the method used did not provide as current data as in the new approach, and it was provided only twice in the last 20 years. Dairy consultants want current and accurate information on the extent and primary causes for culling of dairy cows in order to help producers optimize their herd management. This report shows 65 to 75% of cows remain in the herd for a subsequent lactation, depending on the breed. Survival to subsequent lactation decreased as lactation number increased, dropping from 77% in first lactation down to 46% for lactations 6 and above in Holsteins. The primary reasons given for exiting were died (17 to 25%) and reproduction performance (15 to 23%), but still a large number of codes supplied (29 to 37%) were non-descriptive in their reason for termination.