Article| Volume 84, ISSUE 3, P600-608, March 2001

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The Effect of Extended Calving Intervals in High Lactating Cows on Milk Production and Profitability

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      A field trial was conducted to examine the effect of extended calving interval (CI) on production and profitability of high yielding cows (n = 937). First insemination was performed at 154 and 93 d postpartum (pp), for treatment and control primiparous cows, respectively, and at 124 and 71 d pp for treatment and control multiparous cows, respectively. During the first experimental lactation, average daily value-corrected milk (VCM) yield was 28.5 and 27.7 kg/d of CI for treatment (n = 131) and control (n = 133) primiparous cows, respectively. No significant difference in average daily VCM yield (33.0 and 32.8 kg/d of CI) was found between treatment (n = 271) and control (n = 215) multiparous cows. In the first 150 d of the subsequent lactation, there were significant differences in milk and VCM production in favor of the treatment primiparous cows (41.4 vs. 39.7 kg of VCM/d) but no significant differences in the production of multiparous cows. Primiparous and multiparous cows with extended lactations were more profitable. During the first experimental lactation, there were advantages of $0.19 and $0.12/d of CI in the net returns for primiparous cows and multiparous cows with longer CI, respectively. When the economic analysis included the first experimental lactation plus the first 150 d of the subsequent one, the net return per day of CI was higher for cows with an extended voluntary waiting period: $0.21/d and $0.16/d for primiparous and multiparous cows, respectively. A delay of 60 d with respect to the usual voluntary waiting period in the beginning of inseminations of high yielding cows has economic advantages and allows the farmer an optionfor decisions regarding individual cows.

      Key words

      Abbreviation Key:

      CI (calving interval), DO (days open), pp (postpartum), VCM (value-corrected milk), VWP (voluntary waiting period)


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