Milking once-a-day for the first month of calving


"Saving two hours a day for 28 days is significant. It’s a full week’s work saved with just one practice."

Milking once-a-day for the first month of calving

  • ADDED
  • 1 mth ago

"Saving two hours a day for 28 days is significant. It’s a full week’s work saved with just one practice."

The following article is published in Lakeland Dairies / Teagasc Joint Development Programme's innovative and informative 28-page booklet.

The booklet contains recommendations, tips and case studies, aimed at making farm life easier for Lakeland Dairies' milk suppliers.

With more cows calving in February each year, some farmers have decided to milk once-a-day for the first month of calving. This is a temporary measure to help reduce workload at a stressful and busy time of year.

Thomas Loughrey from Co. Westmeath has made the change to milk once-a-day in February and it has had positive effects on his workday in the calving season.

I started milking once-a-day in February after the topic being mentioned at my discussion group. I had a fear about my SCC or incidences of mastitis. There has been no effect on milk quality or annual milk yield since I went once-a-day milking in February.

It had a hugely positive effect on the structure of the working day. Saving two hours a day for 28 days is significant. It’s a full week’s work saved with just one practice.

Positives of once-a-day milking in February

  • Reduce the dependence on family help on the farm.

  • Often times, family help is overlooked or undervalued.

  • Temporary once-a-day milking at the start of lactation

    reduces 1.5-3hrs work per day. These hours are of

    particular importance in the springtime.

  • More time is available to spend with calves, ensuring a

    more successful calf rearing.

  • Cows do not exhibit as long or as deep a negative

    energy balance, helping them cycle and get back in calf. This practice has encouraged many farmers to tackle an underlying SCC problem.

Thomas' working day in February

  • 6.30am - Check calving shed, feed new-born calves with stored colostrum.
  • 7.30am - Start milking. Thomas milks all his colostrum and antibiotic cows last.
  • 9am - Cows are let out to grass for 3-5 hours.
  • 9.30am - Feed calves.
  • 11am-3pm - Feeding silage, servicing the calf shed (bedding concentrate etc.) cleaning cubicles, general farm jobs.
  • 3.30pm - Cows back in from grass.
  • 4.00pm - Feed calves with the milk from morning heated up.
  • 5-11pm - Checking calving sheds and feeding new-born calves.

Similar Articles

Comments


The Marts Forecast
The Marts Forecast
Click to View Weekly Mart Schedules
SELECT LIVESTOCK

Cattle Marts Scheduled Nationwide

Monday

  • Birr
  • Carrigallen
  • Granard
  • Elphin
  • Inishowen
  • Manorhamilton
  • Stranolar
  • Tuam

Tuesday

  • Ballina
  • Ballyjamesduff
  • Drumshambo
  • Ennis
  • Enniscorthy
  • Fermoy
  • Nenagh

Wednesday

  • Athenry
  • Ballinrobe
  • Elphin
  • Granard
  • Kilrush
  • Nenagh

Thursday

  • Ballymote
  • Birr
  • Castlerea
  • Drumshambo
  • Ennis
  • Kilkenny
  • Raphoe

Friday

  • Donegal
  • Gort
  • Kilfenora
  • Roscommon
  • Roscrea
  • Tullow

Saturday

  • Balla
  • Carnew
  • Carrigallen
  • Dowra
  • Loughrea
  • Maam Cross
  • Mohill
  • New Ross
  • Scariff
  • Tullow

Sheep Marts Scheduled Nationwide

Monday

  • Ballyjamesduff
  • Carrigallen
  • Elphin
  • Fermoy
  • Kilkenny
  • Raphoe

Tuesday

  • Athenry
  • Ballina
  • Donegal
  • Ennis
  • Inishowen
  • Tuam
  • Tullow

Wednesday

  • Ballinrobe
  • Enniscorthy
  • Gort
  • Manorhamilton
  • Roscommon
  • Roscrea
  • Stranorlar

Thursday

  • Ballymote
  • Carnew
  • Loughrea

Friday

  • Dowra

Saturday

  • New Ross
  • Maam Cross

Dairy Marts Scheduled Nationwide

Monday

  • Kilkenny

Tuesday

Wednesday

  • Enniscorthy (2nd Wednesday Of Month)

Thursday

Friday

  • Fermoy

Saturday

Calf Marts Scheduled Nationwide

Monday

Tuesday

  • Kilkenny

Wednesday

  • Enniscorthy

Thursday

Friday

Saturday