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Axegärd, Caroline, 2017. Individual drinking water intake of dairy cows in an AMS barn. Second cycle, A2E. Uppsala: SLU, Dept. of Animal Nutrition and Management

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Abstract

Today’s dairy cows have high requirements of nutrients and water to give a large milk production. Factors that under normal circumstances affect drinking behaviour are cow’s eating pattern, the temperature of the water, whether the water is supplied in a water bowl or a trough, the cows’ dominance order and if the water bowl is shared with other cows. There are several factors that are positively related to water intake such as temperature, humidity, dry matter intake, milk production, ration dry matter content, lactation day, body weight and also sodium and potassium intakes. The aim of this study was to investigate which factors that could best explain different levels of water intake in dairy cows and how social rank was related to diurnal pattern of water intake. A further aim was to evaluate a system for automated recording of drinking water intake with the help of observations of the drinking behaviours and social rank order. The study was performed in a barn with automatic milking system (AMS), and took place at The Swedish Livestock Research Centre, Swedish University of Agriculture Sciences, Uppsala, with dairy cows kept in a loose housing system. The number of cows in the barn section where the study took place was 60-65 cows. The dairy cows in the study were of the breeds Swedish Red and Swedish Holstein. The feed ration contained grass/clover silage and concentrate. The seven water bowls that were used in the barn had equipment which could identify the cow and measure the water flow for recording water consumption. From the 92 cows that was in the observation period there were 37 cows that were left when the other cows were removed because of reasons such as wrong registration, had been in the VMS group too short time and cows that splashed or licked out water. Data were compiled in Microsoft Excel 2013 and the built-in functions were used for calculating arithmetic means and making graphs. Statistical evaluation was done with procedures of SAS 9.3 (SAS Institute Inc., Cary, N.C.). Thirty-seven cows (42%) were correctly identified during the observation period. Cow identification with the necklace transponders did not show optimal results with the original placement of the antenna. The individual drinking water intake had a range between 23.9 and 130.4 kg/day and the total water intake (including feed water) were between 55.9 and 203.5 kg/day for the 37 cows. Drinking water intake was positively correlated to most of the factors including milk yield, dry matter intake, total water intake, potassium intake, sodium intake and nitrogen intake in the feed. The 37 cows in this study drank 56.0 % of their total daily intake between 8:00 to 20:00. Heavy cows, Swedish Holstein cows, lower ranked cows and parity 3 cows were cow categories that drank numerically most water/hour during a day. There was a main difference among cows regarding both the number of registrations/day and the duration/registration.

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Dagens mjölkkor har höga krav på näringsförsörjning och ett stort vattenbehov för att kunna ge en hög mjölkproduktion. Faktorer som under normala omständigheter påverkar drickbeteendet är ätmönstret, temperaturen i vattnet, om vattnet dricks ur en vattenkopp eller ett tråg, kornas dominansordning och om vattenkoppen delas med andra kor. Det finns flera faktorer som är positivt relaterade till vattenintag såsom temperatur, luftfuktighet, torrsubstansintag, mjölkproduktion, foderstatens torrsubstanshalt, laktationsdag, kroppsvikt och även natrium- och kaliumintag. Syftet med denna studie var att undersöka vilka faktorer som bäst kunde förklara olika vattenintag för mjölkkor och hur social rang relaterar till dygnsmönstret för vattenintag. Ett ytterligare syfte var att utvärdera ett system för automatisk registrering av dricksvattenintag med hjälp av observationer av drickbeteende och social rangordning. Studien genomfördes i ett AMS-stall vid Sveriges Lantbruksuniversitet i Uppsala med mjölkkor i ett lösdriftssystem. Det var 60-65 kor i stallet av raserna Svensk röd och vit boskap (SRB) och Svensk Holstein (SH). Foderstaten bestod av gräs-/klöverensilage och koncentrat. De sju vattenkopparna som användes i stallet hade utrustning som kunde identifiera kon och mäta vattenflödet för registrering av vattenförbrukningen. Från de 92 korna som var med i observationsperioden var det 37 kor som var kvar när kor tagits bort på grund av felregistrering, att de varit i VMS-gruppen för kort tid eller att de stänkte eller slickade ut vattnet. Data samlades i Microsoft Excel 2013 och de inbyggda funktionerna användes för att beräkna aritmetiska medelvärden och göra grafer. Statistisk utvärdering gjordes i SAS 9.3 (SAS Institute Inc., Cary, NC). 41 kor (47 %) var korrekt identifierade under observationsperioden. Identifikation av kon med hjälp av transpondern visade inte optimala resultat med den ursprungliga placeringen av antennen. Det individuella dricksvattenintaget var mellan 23.9 och 130.4 kg/dag och det totala vattenintaget (inklusive fodervatten) var mellan 55.9 och 203.5 kg/dag för de 37 korna. Dricksvattenintaget var positivt korrelerat till ett flertal faktorer, bland annat mjölkavkastning, torrsubstansintag, totalt vattenintag, kaliumintag, natriumintag och kväveintag. De 37 korna i denna studie drack 56.0% av sitt totala dagliga intag mellan 8:00 till 20:00. Tunga kor, Svensk Holsteinkor, lägre rankade kor och kor i laktation 3 var de kategorier som drack numeriskt mest vatten/timme under en dag. Det fanns en stor skillnad mellan korna i antalet registreringar/dag och varaktigheten/registrering.

Main title:Individual drinking water intake of dairy cows in an AMS barn
Authors:Axegärd, Caroline
Supervisor:Eriksson, Torsten and Rustas, Bengt-Ove and Lidfors, Lena
Examiner:Svennersten Sjaunja, Kerstin
Series:Examensarbete / Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet, Institutionen för husdjurens utfodring och vård
Volume/Sequential designation:595
Year of Publication:2017
Level and depth descriptor:Second cycle, A2E
Student's programme affiliation:VY001 Agricultural Science Programme - Animal Science 270 HEC
Department:(VH) > Dept. of Animal Nutrition and Management
Keywords:dairy cows, automatic water bowl, water intake, milking production, feed and social factors, behavior
URN:NBN:urn:nbn:se:slu:epsilon-s-6462
Permanent URL:
http://urn.kb.se/resolve?urn=urn:nbn:se:slu:epsilon-s-6462
Subjects:Animal feeding
Language:English
Deposited On:27 Jun 2017 09:24
Metadata Last Modified:27 Jun 2017 09:24

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